Lavish, Gold-Plated Pensions Of Rock Island County-Area Retired Government Employees Far Exceed Wages Of Workers In Private Sector
MOLINE–A new report by pension researcher Bill Zettler reveals that Rock Island, Henry and Mercer County-area retired government employees receive lavish, gold-plated pensions that far exceed actual wages of workers in the private sector.
“These government-employee pensions are bankrupting the state pension funds,” said Jim Tobin, President of National Taxpayers United of Illinois (NTUI). “That’s the real reason Gov. Patrick Quinn (D) wants to raise the state personal income tax up to 67%. He wants to pump taxpayer dollars into the state’s floundering pension programs.”
Jim Tobin talks to ABC TV, FOX TV, the Moline Dispatch and the Rock Island Argus at a press conference on December 16, 2010.
“Those receiving the largest annual pensions are retired government-school educators,” said Tobin. “Rock Island County’s retired public school teachers in the Teachers Retirement System (TRS) are really raking it in. The largest annual TRS pension goes to Randall Whitlock (United TWP HSD 30), whose annual pension is $132,931 — $11,078 a month. For Henry/Mercer counties, the largest retired-teacher pension goes to Harold Ford (Geneseo CUSD 228), whose annual pension is $117,731 — $9,811 a month.”
“The largest Rock Island Community College pension goes to Dorothy Beck, who received an annual pension of $103,277 — $8,606 a month. The largest annual pension for Mercer County goes to Kendall Pottorff, formerly employed by Aledo CUSD 201, who received an annual pension of $ 81,776 — $6,815 a month.”
“With an average individual income of $30,500 for Mercer County, $36,600 for Henry County and a median household income of $46,060 for Rock Island County, these county residents are stagnating, while many of these retired government employees are well on their way to becoming pension millionaires.”
“These retired government employees are sucking the system dry. But there is no need to raise the state income tax or cut government services. Three crucial reforms can save the system and spare Illinois taxpayers. New government hires should be required to fund their own retirements with 401(k) plans. Ending pensions for new government hires will eventually eliminate unfunded government pensions.”
“In Illinois, if each current state pension fund employee were required to contribute an additional 10% to his or her pension, taxpayers would save over $150 billion over the next 35 years. Requiring Illinois public employees to pay for one-half of their health care premiums would save even more – an estimated $230 billion over current projections.”