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Avon Township Approves Pay Cuts to Elected Officials

The cuts are expected to save the Township $60,000 a year in salary, pension payments and health care costs.

12:45 p.m. Updated to reflect current annual salaries of board members.

Residents in Avon Township may start to see some relief when it comes to property taxes. The Township board voted unanimously to cut salaries of elected officials by up to 27 percent, in some cases, and to mandate contributions by elected officials to health care provided by the Township.

The resolution is expected to save taxpayers up to $60,000 in its first year, and additional savings in the following three years, said Sam Yingling, Avon Township Supervisor.

"We are setting the example and leading by it," Yingling said. "We're reducing the costs to run the township and that will ultimately pass on to our taxpayers."

Beginning in the new term of 2013 the salary of elected officials will revert back to the amounts they were in 2008. According to Yinglin the decreases are as follows:

  • Supervisor - Current salary of $71,361 and will take a 16% decrease.
  • Clerk - Current salary of $25,887 and will take a 12% decrease.
  • Assessor - Current salary of $85,248 and will take a 27% decrease.
  • Highway Commissioner - Current salary of $71,361 and will take a 16% decrease
  • Trustees - Current salary of $2,926 and will take a 12% decrease

In the remaining three years of the term following 2013 salaries will go down an additional three percent each year. Also, beginning in 2013 all eligible elected officials must contribute ten percent to any health care coverage they receive through the Township.

Trustee Doug Williams said the meeting on Sept. 10 was about compromise. While Yingling initially called for a 30% reduction in salaries, others wanted less. In the end "we were all willing to hear each other and could make a unamious decision," Yingling said.

"We don't want to gut the office," Williams said. "There are many issues including foreclosures and unemployment that we need to be able to work on."

Williams said he feels these cuts will still give the Township the ability to do that. "We want to make sure we keep Avon Township viable as a local entity for our residents."

Avon Township serves more than 65,000 residents and encompasses portions of the Villages of Grayslake, Round Lake, Round Lake Beach, Round Lake Heights, Round Lake Park, Hainesville, Third Lake, and surrounding unincorporated areas.

According to state law salaries of township officials are set by the previous administration. Current elected officials of Avon Township have already voluntarily returned pay increases that were set by the previous administration to the tune of about $30,000.

Steve Sarich September 12, 2012 at 12:43 PM
If this isn't a reason to vote for Sam Yingling I don't know what is. Name another politician who continues to govern with the sole intent of putting the governmental unit they oversee "out of business." Vote for Sam...we need Sam!
Softball Jim September 12, 2012 at 01:27 PM
What were the current salaries they are cutting? not just the percentages. If you really want to make a statement, Get rid of all township governments. It is a duplication of effort and a true waste of tax dollars. My guess is this pay cut will translate to about $100.00 on my $9,500 tax bill. On this article alone, I could not make a decision to support Sammy !
Tim Froehlig September 12, 2012 at 03:59 PM
I agree with what Jim said above. This is nothing more than a politically timed stunt, and is a mere drop in the bucket. The township governments are indeed a duplication that does nothing but cost people extra money to begin with. Where was the concern earlier this year or last year? Now suddenly right before election time?
Lowell Jaffe September 12, 2012 at 04:49 PM
@Softball Jim: If this doesn't convice you, read Sam's op-ed titled "Dismantle Outdated Townships." It was written over a year ago and spells out Sam's thinking on townships. You can find it on samyingling.com, news section, page two. It should also be archived at the Daily Herald. Sam is one guy fighting an entrenched system. Keep that in mind and report back. Thanks.
RoundLakeAreaNews.com September 12, 2012 at 05:00 PM
They went back to the salaries that were approved starting in 2008 (thru 2012) of which they have all been returning the increases approved by the previous board. This (the 2008 figures) will be the new starting salaries after the 2013 election and it will decline each year after that by 3%. You can watch the entire meeting on the following video or just skip to about 1 hour 15 minutes to hear the final motion and vote. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_iCZGqhYIQ
Lowell Jaffe September 12, 2012 at 05:00 PM
@Tim Froehlig. The Illinois Township Code prohibits change to elected official salary until just before the end of the term. This is the reason Sam and other elected have been voluntarily giving back salary for over three years. Go to Sam's website or just google his name, you'll see dozens of articles on this topic. What prompted Sam to run for State Rep is Illinois' "dysfunctional Property Tax Code" and an incumbant who wouldn't do anything to reform it.
RoundLakeAreaNews.com September 12, 2012 at 05:01 PM
This is what you will hear in the full length meeting video: Supervisor & Highway Commissioner: 2013 = $61,000 2014 = $59,170 2015 = $57,394 2016 = $55,673 Assessor 2013 = $65,900 2014 = $63,923 2015 = $62,005 2016 = $60,145 Clerk 2013 = $23,000 2014 = $22,310 2015 = $21,640 2016 = $20,991 Trustees 2013 = $2,600 2014 = $2,522 2015 = $2,446 2016 = $2,372 Treasurer 2013-2016 = $500
Angela Morrey September 12, 2012 at 05:53 PM
Thank you for the comments. The article has been updated to include the current annual salaries. Per Sam Yingling they are as follows: Assessor: $85,248 Highway Commissioner: $71,361 Supervisor: $71,361 Clerk: $25,887 Trustee: $2,926
Lowell Jaffe September 12, 2012 at 06:51 PM
Thanks, Angela. As a follow-up to Gene and others regarding Sam's position on township reform, here's the link. Other than the headline which Sam didn't write, you'll see that Sam supports reforms that allows taxpayers in individual townships to decide, via refferendum, how their government is structured: http://www.samyingling.com/content/readMore1/infobox/news/template/default/active_id/12
RoundLakeAreaNews.com September 12, 2012 at 07:51 PM
The salaries that Angela has posted do not take into consideration the annual increases that have been RETURNED for the past several years, most going into the food pantry and most recently to help struggling seniors with their tax bills. In other words, for example, Yingling did NOT pocket the full $71,000 as approved by the previous administration.
RoundLakeAreaNews.com September 12, 2012 at 07:57 PM
Also, as a side note, for those who want to see changes in the way the Township operates or see it disbanded altogether, why not show up at their meetings? There were no audience members or any other reporters there besides myself. Only the Township officials including the Assessor and Highway Commissioner who you can see speaking in the 1.5 hour video. It's easy to complain rather than becoming involved in the process, even if it's only as an audience member speaking up for your beliefs.
Jim Patterson September 12, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Kudos to Yingling and Avon Township for doing the right thing. If we had more people like Yingling in office, this State wouldn't be such a mess. This was an act of bold leadership.

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