October 20th, 2020
Lavish, Gold-Plated Pensions Making Millionaires Of Milwaukee, WI-Area Government Employees
MILWAUKEE–A report released today by Taxpayers United of America (TUA) reveals that government employees of the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee County schools, and the County of Milwaukee are not only receiving very generous salaries but that their estimated pension payments in many cases will be larger than salaries in the private sector.
“The state refuses to release figures relating to pensions, and I condemn this lack of transparency. Under Wisconsin Statute 40.07, personal information from the Wisconsin pension system is not available under the Open Records act. Once the employee retires it is hands-off, even though the public is paying for the pensions.”
“Heading the list of UW Milwaukee’s Top 100 salaries and estimated pensions is Coach Robert D. Jeter III, pulling in an enormous annual salary of $411,027. When Jeter retires, his pension including Social Security is estimated to start at $313,719 a year — $26,143 a month. Over a normal lifetime, he will collect an astounding $6,588,097 in total pension payments.”
“Of our list of the Top 100 salaries and estimated pensions for the City of Milwaukee, Police Lieutenant Kenneth R. Grams tops the list, with a very generous annual pay of $174,154. When Grams retires, his pension including Social Security is estimated to start at $139,200 a year — $11,600 a month. Over a normal lifetime, he will collect over $2,923,205 in total pension payments.”
“Our Top 100 salaries and estimated pensions for the Milwaukee County Government Schools reveals that Gregory Thornton of the Milwaukee School District receives an annual salary of $265,000 with fringe benefits of $77,398. When Thornton retires, his pension including Social Security is estimated to start at $211,500 a year — $17,625 a month. Over a normal lifetime, he will collect over $4,441,500 in total pension payments.”
Fringe benefits include charges paid by local taxpayers, such as Social Security taxes, health insurance premiums and retirement contributions.
“Of the top salaries and estimated pensions for Milwaukee County, Forensic Medical Director Thomas Harding had a gross pay in 2010 of $222,700. When Harding retires, his pension including Social Security is estimated to start at $181,890 a year — $15,158 a month.”
“Wisconsin’s pension system is making multimillionaires out of public employees at taxpayer expense,” said Tobin. “All new government hires should plan for their own retirement with 401(k) plans and Social Security, just as workers in the private sector.”