CHICAGO (AP) — Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Brady voted for legislation as an Illinois state senator in 2003 that could have benefited his business interests as a developer, according to a published report.
Brady, who faces Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn in November, has worked for more than two decades in his family home construction business in central Illinois.
After the state announced plans in 2002 for an Interstate Highway 57 interchange near Champaign, he started planning a 300-plus home subdivision on more than 100 acres adjacent to the interchange site, according to a story Sunday in the Chicago Tribune that cited court documents and interviews.
The following year in November, Brady voted to enact legislation giving local government the authority to take land for sewers near the interchange. That would have helped Brady's development and property value.
Brady, of Bloomington, also voted to reauthorize the legislation in 2006, long after he had started acquiring the land. He also voted in favor of similar legislation in 2007 giving Champaign officials the authority to seize property to build a portion of the interchange.
In addition, Brady would have been further involved in the development of sewers near the interchange. He made a deal with the city that would let him build a pumping station and sewer connection, and city officials agreed to later pay Brady back a portion of the costs, according to the Tribune.
Brady has denied wrongdoing.
"If I felt I had a conflict, I wouldn't have done that," Brady told the Tribune.
His campaign spokeswoman Jaime Elich said Monday that Brady's actions involving the interchange development were "normal business dealings."
"Senator Brady has recused himself of voting when in fact he is concerned about a conflict of interest," she said in an e-mailed statement.
In 2007, the deal fell through and the interchange project was put on hold.
Brady, who also served in the Illinois House, was appointed to the state Senate in 2002.