Starting Jan. 1, 2019, Illinois will have a new law on the books to fight the misuse of taxpayer dollars.
The law sponsored by state Sen. Tom Cullerton, D-Villa Park, will eliminate severance packages for employees that have been fired for misconduct and limit government-paid severance packages to an amount no greater than 20 weeks of compensation.
“This commonsense law will protect Illinois taxpayers from being on the hook for the actions of discredited public officials,” Cullerton (shown) said. “This will help put a stop to the state handing out blank checks to those who fail to do their jobs.”
The law was brought forward by Cullerton in partnership with the Better Government Association.
The Daily Herald reported that suburban taxpayers are often hit the hardest by this practice. Government administrators are frequently advised to grant rich severances in an attempt to head off employment litigation, so the law is aimed at counteracting these actions.
Some of the employees who were fired for misconduct have received severance pay packages.
Cullerton’s new law will be known as the Government Severance Pay Act and is expected to save taxpayers millions of dollars over the next decade.
“The days of handing out bloated severance packages to disgraced public officials are coming to an end,” Cullerton said. “Our state cannot afford to waste a single penny, especially to help folks who treat taxpayers like their own personal piggy bank.”
Senate Bill 3604 passed the Senate and House with unanimous support. Cullerton will continue to work to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse in the 101st General Assembly which is scheduled to start at the beginning of the new year.