“In Illinois, lawmakers who move to lucrative state jobs can apply the higher salary to their legislative pension, which pays richer benefits than pensions for state workers. In July, Democratic former House member Gary Hannig began collecting a $123,057 legislative pension, even though his legislative salary was $86,902 when he left office in 2009. His pension, however, is based on his $150,228 salary as state Transportation director after leaving the Legislature.” – USA TODAY 9/22/11
Gary Hannig served as Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Secretary from March 2009 to June 2011 earning nearly $150,000 per year. On August 22, 2014, the Governor’s Office of Executive Inspector General (“OEIG”) released OEIG Case #11-01567 that revealed the following:
- The Office of Secretary of Transportation is responsible for administration of the Illinois Department of Transportation’s personnel policies
- Between March 2009 and June 2011, Hannig violated section 1-2 of IDOT’s Personnel Policies Manual by, among other things, failing to appropriately administer Illinois Department of Transportation’s personnel policies.
- Between March 2009 and June 2011, Hannig violated section 1-2 of IDOT’s Personnel Policies Manual when he, among other things, failed to effectively and efficiently manage the agency and establish and maintain an effective system of internal control.
- Between March 2009 and June 2011, Hannig allowed his staff to circumvent Administrative Order No. 2 (2009), which was put into place in order to ensure that person hired into Rutan-covered positions were hired pursuant to the Rutan hiring process, which was put in place to ensure compliance with the United States Supreme Court decision Rutan v. Republican Party of Illinois.
- Surprisingly, former Secretary Gary Hannig informed investigators he was not even aware IDOT had personnel policies.
After leaving IDOT, Hannig began contractual work as Director of Legislative Affairs for Governor Quinn from January 2012 until June 2014 earning nearly $150,000 per year. Incredibly, this was in addition to his pumped pension of nearly $130,000 per year.
The nearly $150,000 per year contract as Director of Legislative Affairs has finally come to an end for Hannig, but will the pumped pension remain? It’s no wonder Illinois is broke.