Garritt M. Cullerton, 27, son of Illinois Senate President John Cullerton, pleaded guilty today to driving under the influence of alcohol after he was stopped in downtown Chicago last April in a 2009 Ford Escape registered to the state.
Cullerton was pulled over during early-morning hours April 18 in the 800 block of North Dearborn Street. Police alleged he had a blood-alcohol level of 0.188, more than twice the legal limit of 0.08.
Garritt M. Cullerton, 27, also pleaded guilty to an improper lane usage citation, according to the Cook County state’s attorney’s office.
Cullerton was sentenced to two years of conditional discharge today in Cook County traffic court before Judge Sharon Johnson. He was also ordered to perform 240 hours of community service, seek treatment for alcohol abuse and pay a $1,250 fine with George Livas representing him as his defense attorney.
Garritt Cullerton has had previous charges of DUI in 2004 and 2008, but this marks his first conviction for DUI.
Senate President John Cullerton gave up his 2009 Ford Escape in May 2010, and returned it to the State of Illinois.
Senate President John Cullerton sponsored legislation that requires motorists convicted of drunken driving to blow into an ignition-locking device to prove their sobriety. Even first-time convicted DUI offenders have to do it every time they get behind the wheel in order to start their vehicle. The ignition-locking device is one of the strictest in the United States.
Senate President John Cullerton is also in the news this week as he pushed legislation that would require some online retailers, such as Amazon.com, to collect the state’s 6.25 percent sales tax. Cullerton was quoted saying the tax is not a new tax. “It’s just a way of collecting the tax,” Cullerton said.
Amazon immediately sent a letter to Illinois Amazon Affiliates with a notification that if the bill is signed by Governor Quinn, Amazon.com would end its relationships with Illinois-based Associates, and terminate the participation of all Illinois residents in the Associates Program.
Amazon would no longer pay any advertising fees for sales referred to amazon.com, endless.com and smallparts.com.
Amazon notes that the law is unconstitutional and that over a dozen other states have considered essentially identical legislation but have rejected these proposals largely because of the adverse impact on their states’ residents.
The end result is that Illinois wouldn’t get any tax income from Amazon because Amazon would pull out of Illinois. The state would also incur high legal expenses because Amazon is likely to sue the State of Illinois for the unconstitutional law. Also, thousands of residents and businesses, who are Amazon affiliates would lose income and have less money to spend in the State of Illinois.
To avoid the tax or avoid losing the affiliate relationship with Amazon, businesses could move out of the State of Illinois, further reducing tax income for the State for Illinois.
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