Quinn names Jerry Stermer to succeed Topinka as Illinois comptroller

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Governor Pat Quinn appointed a long-time aide to succeed the late Judy Barr Topinka Friday.

Quinn budget director Jerry Stermer is the state’s new comptroller – at least for a few weeks.

Stermer has agreed to voluntarily resign on January 12th, allowing incoming Gov Bruce Rauner to appoint whoever he likes to fill at least part of the term late Judy Barr Topinka was re-elected to last month.

"I accept this appointment … in order to ensure that we maintain ordinary and timely operations of state government … which are so important  to all Illinois families," Stermer said today.

Governor Quinn's made it clear he wants a special election to choose Topinka’s

Successor despite the Republican view that that appointment belongs to the next governor.

“I think it's crystal clear that the people of Illinois, through their elected representatives and senators, have the right, through the general assembly, to set a special election for this office, to set it as soon as possible," Quinn said.

The former comptroller's chief of staff Nancy Kimme is staying on. It is a move praised by Rauner. He said in a statement, “Appointing a temporary placeholder and keeping Judy Baar Topinka’s staff in place is an appropriate decision and will ensure continuity of services for the people of Illinois – for that I thank the governor. I know Jerry Stermer will be well served by Nancy Kimme and the team in the comptroller’s office.”

The question of a special election still remains. Governor quinn has called lawmakers back to the capitol for a January 8th special session, hoping they'll pass a law to hold a special election for comptroller in 2016.

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