Tammy Duckworth

Governor Rauner's Veterans' Affairs Director Steps Down

13 residents have died at a downstate veterans' home amid the outbreak

 Gov. Bruce Rauner's director of veterans' affairs is stepping down.

A statement from the Republican's office Friday indicated that Erica Jeffries has accepted an offer in the private sector.

WBEZ Chicago cited an internal email in reporting that Jeffries' last day would be May 18 before starting work for Johnson and Johnson.

Jeffries has been director through a Legionnaires' disease crisis at the Quincy veterans home. She has been criticized by lawmakers as part of what some say has been Rauner's slow and inadequate response to the disease that has contributed to the deaths of 13 residents since 2015.

Rauner's statement thanked Jeffries for "her tremendous service" and said the administration will soon consider successors.

Senator Tammy Duckworth issued a statement of her own, saying that Jeffries' resignation isn't enough in the wake of the Legionnaires' outbreak. 

"This comprehensive failure reflects an administration that appears more concerns with the quality of press coverage than quality of care in Quincy," she said. "Governor Rauner must now do his part and be held accountable for acting swiftly to put funds to good use on behalf of Illinois's veterans." 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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