Monday, July 15, 2019

Hogs At The Trough



The hogs are back at the trough.

A hearing has been scheduled for August 7th by a Cook County judge to hear a case brought by two former Illinois State Senators. They are suing the state for back pay. They claim they (and all state lawmakers) should have received cost of living raises from 2012 and 2018. They want their money, despite the fact that they both voted to forgo the raises while in the legislature.

Only in Illinois could this happen. The former lawmakers, Senator Michael Nolan from Elgin…and Senator James Clayborn of Belleville---both Democrats---voted for a pay freeze back in 2012. In fact, they each made statements about how important it was to not increase their salaries.

But now, they are on the outside, and want back pay….for everyone in the General Assembly.
In a piece on the Illinois Policy blog written by Vincent Caruso…He notes…when Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law a $1,600 cost-of-living increase for the legislature less than a month ago, it upped the salary of lawmakers in the state to $70,000 a year. In all, lawmaker compensation costs taxpayers more than $32-million dollars annually. This is a part-time job where legislators get per diem, mileage and lots of other perks and work maybe 70 days a year in Springfield.

..And they have a retirement system you know. Fifty-eight former legislators make over $100,000 a year….and 44 have already pulled down over a million dollars in their retirement.  By the way---that retirement system is also broke.

The suit goes forward at the same time we are looking at 21 new tax and fee hikes.
The hogs might win this one. It insures the taxpayers of Illinois will continue their losing streak.