A researcher who took over a high-priced study of Governor Pat Quinn’s now-defunct anti-violence program says in an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times that missing data made it difficult to evaluate the program.
The $55 million Neighborhood Recovery Initiative is the focus of a legislative inquiry following a scathing state audit. The newspaper report raises questions about why program officials chose a half-million-dollar study over more in-depth research that would’ve been free.
Auditors learned the University of Illinois at Chicago study wasn’t designed to evaluate whether the program met its goal of reducing violence despite its price tag. The University of Chicago Crime Lab offered to do a more rigorous study without cost.
Quinn spokesman Grant Klinzman tells the Sun-Times the governor wasn’t involved in discussions about the research.