Public hearing into Auditor General’s campaign spending moves forward

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A public hearing in the Illinois State Board of Elections’ (ISBE) proceedings concerning a private citizen’s complaint against Auditor General Frank Mautino will go forward despite attempts from both sides to delay the proceedings.

Mautino is under federal investigation over campaign spending from his time as a state legislator. Mautino also is involved in a complaint filed by Streator resident David Cooke concerning spending at a service station and bank.

Mautino’s attorney requested that the state election board hold off on the public hearing. That was shot down by the election board Monday. Cooke’s request to delay the public hearing also was shot down. Cooke is not an attorney.

Cooke will have to move quickly to prepare.

The retired Exelon employee didn’t realize that investigating the case would be entirely on him, not the elections board, which doesn’t conduct such investigations.

Elections board member Andrew Carruthers said he wants to act on the hearing officer’s recommendations at the board’s October meeting. Cooke said that makes him feel disenfranchised.

The elections board referred the case to a hearing officer, but a public hearing date has not been set.

Cooke said he will be out of town for a month, but will coordinate proceedings via teleconference.