Lawmaker Looking to Require Elected Officials to Wear Body Cameras While Conducting Official Business

Lawmaker Looking to Require Elected Officials to Wear Body Cameras While Conducting Official Business

SPRINGFIELD (IRN) — One state lawmaker has a plan to reduce political corruption in Illinois.

State Rep. John Cabello, R-Machesney Park, has filed a bill to require all elected officials in the state to wear a body camera while conducting public business.

“Let’s look at some of the headlines throughout the last few months,” Cabello said. “All we hear about is corruption with certain lawmakers. And tell me, if they had a body camera on, do you think this would have happened?”

Cabello says he was inspired by another recent public policy push under discussion in Springfield.

“It came about with the uproar of law enforcement must have a body cam,” Cabello said, “the folks that want law enforcement to wear a body cam from the time they start work
until the time they end work. You know what, if it’s good enough for law enforcement, then it’s good enough for elected officials as well.”

The measure would apply to city, county, and state lawmakers. Under the proposal, public officials found to be in violation of the body cam law could receive fines.

“There are unfortunately bad people in every single profession, but this way it keeps everybody a little bit more accountable,” Cabello said. “If they think that it’s too expensive to have that, well then how can we think that our police departments can afford this?”

The bill directs the State Board of Elections to develop rules for the program. The video would be available if needed as evidence.

Cabello filed the bill during the last legislative session as well, but the measure never came up for a vote.

“I’d be more likely to win the lottery than have these bills see the light of day, but we’re still going to try,” Cabello said.

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