September 29, 2014
By Mindy Ruckman

Illinois is known for its culture of government corruption, fiscal mismanagement and cronyism. That reputation is backed up by hard statistics that say Illinois is the third most corrupt state in the country and the Chicago region is the most corrupt area in the country. Illinois’ citizens deserve better.  Illinois’ government culture on the state...

Illinois is known for its culture of government corruption, fiscal mismanagement and cronyism. That reputation is backed up by hard statistics that say Illinois is the third most corrupt state in the country and the Chicago region is the most corrupt area in the country.

Illinois’ citizens deserve better.  Illinois’ government culture on the state and local level needs to change. Instead of being a state known for its corruption, the people of Illinois deserve government that is open, accessible and transparent with their tax dollars.

Some local governments in Illinois are embracing this culture change by striving to meet higher standards for online transparency and government openness, much higher than what state law requires. These taxing bodies from all across the state are adopting recommendations from the Illinois Policy Institute’s 10-Point Transparency Checklist.

The Illinois Policy Institute highlights these local governments for their outstanding online transparency performance with our Sunshine Award.

These governments:

  • Make elected officials and senior administrators available for the public to contact
  • Account for how taxpayer dollars are being spent by opening finances to the public
  • Use proactive online transparency to prevent and expose government corruption
  • Encourage citizens to take an active, educated role in the local government decision-making process

To earn a Sunshine Award, a local government must score an 80 percent or above on the Local Transparency Project’s 10-Point Transparency Checklist. Full information on how we score local government websites can be found here.

Please contact Mindy Ruckman at mruckman@illinoispolicy.org for more information or to start the grading process in your community.

Only 77 taxing bodies out of the nearly 7,000, in Illinois have won the Illinois Policy Institute’s Sunshine Award. They are listed below.

Illinois Sunshine Award winners

Local Government Agency Entity Type Last graded Score
Hanover Township Township 1/16/13 100%
Kane County County 5/9/13 100%
Village of Lombard Municipality 3/19/14 100%
Village of Orland Park Municipality 11/8/13 100%
City of Evanston Municipality 11/8/13 100%
Village of Skokie Municipality 11/8/13 100%
Village of Wilmette Municipality 9/29/14 100%
Village of Bolingbrook Municipality 3/30/15 100%
City of Rolling Meadows Municipality 11/5/15 100%
Wheatland Township Township 1/15/16 100%
City of Bloomington Municipality 5/26/15 100%
City of Elgin Municipality 11/8/13 98.70%
Village of Huntley Municipality 5/22/13 98.30%
Village of Bensenville Municipality 3/15/13 98%
Village of Lake Zurich Municipality 5/26/16 96.80%
City of Park Ridge Municipality 3/25/15 94.80%
City of Naperville Municipality 11/8/13 94.30%
Community High School District #94 School District 2/21/13 93.80%
Hoffman Estates Park District Park District 11/26/13 93.40%
City of Countryside Municipality 3/5/14 93.10%
Orland Fire Protection District Fire District 5/17/12 93%
Village of LaGrange Municipality 1/14/15 92.80%
Community School District #15 School District 4/1/14 92.50%
Village of Glencoe Municipality 2/9/11 92.50%
City of Wheaton Municipality 3/19/14 92.30%
City of Peoria Municipality 12/20/13 92.20%
Township of Orland Township 5/17/12 92.10%
Village of Tinley Park Municipality 11/8/13 91.90%
Coal City Community Unit School District #1 School district 10/21/15 91.60%
Village of Villa Park Municipality 10/31/13 91.40%
DuPage County County 5/9/13 90.80%
Village of Bartlett Municipality 3/15/14 90.60%
Elmhurst Community School District #205 School District 6/20/12 90.60%
Evanston Public Library Library 9/2/15 90.40%
Lake County County 7/18/13 90%
School District #54 School District 7/28/10 90%
Naperville Park District Park District 8/15/13 90%
Village of Carpentersville Municipality 3/19/13 89.90%
Village of Glenview Municipality 3/19/14 89.50%
Village of Palatine Municipality 2/26/14 89.30%
City of Carbondale Municipality 8/1/14 88.90%
City of DeKalb Municipality 3/19/14 88.80%
Sycamore School District #427 School District 5/8/14 88.50%
Village of Homer Glen Municipality 5/21/12 88.20%
Village of Schaumburg Municipality 11/8/13 88.20%
Orland School District #135 School District 5/17/12 88%
Bloomington Public School District #87 School District 9/28/11 87.50%
McLean County School District Unit #5 School District 9/28/11 87.50%
Evanston-Skokie District #65 School District 6/15/11 87%
Village of Willowbrook Municipality 4/8/11 86.80%
Consolidated High School District #230 School District 5/17/12 86.30%
Village of Oak Lawn Municipality 1/23/14 86.10%
City of Elmhurst Municipality 3/15/14 86%
Village of Yorkville Municipality 9/21/12 84.90%
City of Belleville Municipality 3/15/14 84.80%
Village of Algonquin Municipality 8/18/14 84.70%
Village of Montgomery Municipality 1/28/15 84.10%
Rock Island County County 5/9/13 83.70%
Glen Ellyn Park District Park District 11/6/13 83.60%
Village of Mundelein Municipality 7/3/14 82.90%
Village of Arlington Heights Municipality 11/8/13 82.80%
School District #211 School District 7/28/10 82.60%
DeKalb County County 4/1/14 82%
Oakton Community College School District 6/15/11 82%
Village of Downers Grove Municipality 3/15/14 81.90%
Dupage High School District #88 School District 6/20/12 81.70%
Madison County County 5/9/13 81.60%
Champaign Community School District #4 School District 2/18/15 81.50%
Village of Hinsdale Municipality 2/10/11 81.20%
Village of Buffalo Grove Municipality 3/15/14 81%
Village of Hanover Park Municipality 7/17/13 81%
Village of Plainfield Municipality 3/15/14 80.80%
Village of Mount Prospect Municipality 11/8/13 80.40%
Village of Addison  Municipality 8/18/14 80.20%
Downers Grove Park District Park District 2/10/11 80%

 

TAGS: good government, gov 2.0, Sunshine Award