Bob Marshall collects a pension of nearly $85,000 after about 30 years as a Naperville police officer. On top of that, he's paid $157,000 a year as interim city manager. After retiring from the police department, Marshall, 54, began a second career as assistant city manager in 2004. If he gets the permanent city manager job -- a post he says he's interested in -- his salary would increase to $174,000, and he'd become eligible for another pension from the city after eight years employment as an administrator, or in 2012.
Now for the questions.
Marshall no doubt is entitled to his police pension. Should the city council put itself in a position where, if it hires Marshall for the permanent post, he could collect a second pension from the city? How important is the pension question to you? If he's earned his police pension, and if he's the best person for the city manager job, what's wrong with him possibly collecting both a police and municipal pension? Or, knowing that the pension issue strikes a nerve with at least some of Naperville's population, would it be better for the council to avoid any appearance of double-dipping by hiring someone else for the job, someone who is not already collecting a generous pension supported by the taxpayers of Naperville?
To be fair, a couple reminders about pensions: civic employees kick in their own pay for them over the years, and taxpayer-funded entities typically contribute a percentage toward them. In Illinois, most publicly funded pension systems are governed by state law, not local units of government.
We know this is a hot-button topic, first suggested by participants of this online community forum. Fair warning: keep the discussion civil. No personal attacks, profanity or potentially libelous remarks will be published.