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Shields Township board cuts officials’ pay

Updated: December 21, 2012 6:20AM

KNOLLWOOD — Shields Township board members have slashed the pay for all elected positions.

Though somewhat divided on the issue, the board decided that all positions are part-time and should be compensated accordingly.

The vote was unanimous to eliminate the $2,700 annual compensation for the four trustees. The assessor salary was cut to $50,000. Currently, Assessor Theresia Yakes’ annual salary is $82,000.

The supervisor and highway commissioner salaries were cut to $30,000. Currently, Supervisor Gale Strenger Wayne makes $70,000 and Highway Commissioner Bill Goodman earns $52,000.

The pay scale for the town clerk was cut to $6,000 from the current $14,000 annually. David Barkhausen is town clerk.

The supervisor also receives health insurance paid by the township. Officials now have to apply for insurance through the township, but they’ll have to pay for it themselves.

The new pay levels, adopted Thursday, will take affect in May 2013, after the municipal election in April, for all but the assessor. The assessor’s pay cut will take affect in January 2014.

The board was responding to community concerns about salary levels and township expenditures in general.

“The taxpayers have spoken,” Trustee Laura Carney said. “They want relief from too much government in Illinois.”

Wayne expressed disappointment in the board for deciding that the supervisor’s job, and others, should be classified as part-time. She believes this will lead to diminished attention from elected officials to residents’ needs, she said.

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