If you didn't laugh at state government, you might cry.
They say that Illinois is not only broke, but billions of dollars in debt. They say that the state's public pension funds are underfunded by roughly $100 billion. They say the state's finances are so bad it's months behind in paying its bills.
They say a lot of bad things about Illinois' financial condition; now they're saying something new.
They say that the state spent $669,000 on six doors — two for each of the three doorways at the west end of the Capitol building in Springfield — for the ongoing $50 million Capitol renovation project. That's $223,000 for each doorway and another $78,000 for installation.
They say the doorways are really nice. Capitol architect Richard Alsop III describes them as "custom made doors with carvings that do not exist on a shelf at the local home improvement store." He said it took "craftsmen to perform the work necessary to give us the desired and appropriate historic fabric."
Now they're saying the state's politicians are professing embarrassment about spending so much money on fancy new doors to replace glass and metal doors that seemed to be working just fine. A spokesman for Gov. Pat Quinn said Quinn is "concerned" about the expenditure and state Treasurer Dan Rutherford said it's "abundantly unreasonable" to pay so much money for doors.
Our politicians say a lot of things, but somehow they never seem to say no until it's too late. They say that's one of the big reasons why Illinois is in such bad shape.