Lawmakers alarmed but urge caution on Metra - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Lawmakers alarmed but urge caution on Metra

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CHICAGO (Associated Press) -

An Illinois lawmaker who sits on the House Mass Transit Committee says a former Metra CEO's allegations of political influence in hiring and contracting must be closely scrutinized.

Republican David Harris of Arlington Heights says Alex Clifford's memo to the Metra Board showing his resistance to "political patronage politics" by House Speaker Michael Madigan and others are serious. Harris says if Clifford's assertions are accurate, action should be taken.

Metra released the memo to the House committee on Friday.

Clifford's criticism centers on Metra Chairman Brad O'Halloran and Director Larry Huggins. Clifford wrote they wanted him out because he wouldn't accede to politically-backed hiring.

Committee member, Democrat Jack Franks of Marengo, says Clifford's memo represents allegations on a piece of paper that are without context.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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