Every member of the Human Resources Committee voted to abolish Illinois Municipal Retirement Pensions for County Board members starting in December.
Outside the meeting members expressed the opinion that this will make the IMRF requirement for work logs go away.
When contacted, IMRF Executive Director Louis Kosiba wrote, “That is under review.”
The action goes beyond the legislation which State Rep. Jack Franks passed in the Illinois House.
The County Board proposal, which was posted on the McHenry County web site, was amended to add language which would deny a pension to “the County-wide Elected Chairman of the County Board” as well.
“The public is furious,” Donna Kurtz said.
“This is a wake-up call [for both] local and state levels [of government].
“[Pensions] promote something we don’t want–career politicians.”It (the resolution) should include the Chairman.”
Disagreeing with not giving the County Board Chairman a pension was Don Kopsell. He, nevertheless, voted for the final resolution.
During debate, Yvonne Barnes wanted “to make sure the County Board does not have IMRF.”
She said she wanted “to pass something that is fair and not subject to challenge.”
“I think the Board has gone through a huge paradigm shift,” Kurtz added.
“It doesn’t matter if it is a part-time or full-time position.
“[They’ve] got to be reined in.
“Let’s not burden the taxpayers.
“We have to change the way we think.
“We can’t afford it anymore.
“We have to be a role model.
“Let it begin with me.
“The liability exceeds the amount the average guy can [afford to pay].”
Republican candidate for County Board Chairman Mike Walkup was at the witness table.
He pointed out that the employer portion of pensions in the case of governments “is taxpayer money.”
He wondered about pensions for other countywide officials.
“That’s a question for another day,” Diane Evertsen replied.
Pressing the importance of having a legally tight resolution, Barnes asked whether a separate resolution would be needed for the new position of County Board Chairman.
She asked for a review by “the legal experts.”
She also revealed that “many County Board members have been working on this outside of committee for months and months.”
County Administrator Peter Austin reported that County Board Chairman Joe Gottemoller had insisted that the subject matter go though not only the Human Resources Committee, but the Management Services Committee. It’s meeting is on Monday, June 13th.
Voting for the measure were
- John Jung
- Sue Draffkorn
- Diane Evertsen
- Don Kopsell
- Donna Kurtz
- Michael Rein
- Yvonne Barnes