Monday, March 30, 2009

In Office 3 Weeks Adds $40,000 To Pension

Illinois taxpayers are on the hook for another one of those fat pension deals that state legislators have set up for themselves.

The State Employees Retirement System has signed off on granting former Rep. Kurt Granberg (D-Carlyle) a yearly pension of $113,305.

Which is $40,288 more a year than he would have gotten if his pension were based only on his 22-year legislative career, which ended in mid-January.

Instead, pension officials decided Granberg had earned the higher pension serving as director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, a post then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed him to on Jan. 16, less than two weeks before being booted out of office.

Granberg didn't last much longer. He hadn't gotten Senate confirmation yet when Gov. Quinn fired him Feb. 5.

So the pension system had to decide whether to base his retirement payments on his final $85,903-a-year legislative salary or on his $133,300 DNR salary. Lawmakers' pensions are based on 85 percent of their final salary

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