Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich fired all nine members of the scandal-plagued Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board under legislation signed Monday. The governor said he would consider abolishing the certificate-of-need agency but in the meantime would establish a reconfigured five-member board by Sept. 1 to address pending applications. The U.S. attorney's office in Chicago is investigating allegations of attempted extortion and kickbacks by a former board member. "Given all of the issues raised concerning the Health Facilities Planning Board, wiping out the current board and giving it a fresh start with new members is the best way to move forward," Blagojevich said in a news release. The legislation signed Monday calls for stricter conflict-of-interest rules and the repeal of the board by July 1, 2006. -- by Mark Taylor
Ill. fires CON board amid corruption charges
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