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Interview: Bringing Court Fees Under Control

Reps. Darlene Senger and Elaine Nekritz
Brian Mackey
NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS
Rep. Elaine Nekritz, right, is seen with now-former Rep. Darlene Senger in this file photo.

The Illinois criminal justice system has become increasingly reliant on fees. People convicted of crimes have become money makers for state and local government — paying for everything from prosecutors' offices to new police cars.

This spring, the Illinois General Assembly is considering big changes to the system. State Rep. Elaine Nekritz, a Democrat from Northbrook, served on a task force examining court fees (PDF) and is among the co-sponsors of the bipartisan legislation. Other backers include chief sponsor Rep. Steve Andersson, R-Geneva; House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, R-Western Springs; and House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie, D-Chicago.

Nekritz recently visited our Capitol bureau to speak with Statehouse reporter Brian Mackey.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.
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