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Tuesday, August 09, 2016

How Much Do Aurora Police and Fire Employees Cost Taxpayers for Salaries?






Just how much is "reasonable" salary for a police officer or firefighter working the streets and neighborhoods in a city like Aurora with economic deterioration in a state like Illinois falling off the fiscal cliff?

What if that person is not putting themselves at risk on our streets or neighborhoods, but is one of the many layers who "oversee" the people on the streets?

Taxes, labor costs and pension liability have skyrocketed under Corrupt Aurora Mayor Tom Weisner.

We strongly support "reasonable" salaries and benefits for public employees, BUT leaving aside the luxury pensions many will receive for the rest of their life taxpayers can't afford, there are many layers of employees who are NOT on the "front lines" and/or are renowned for their incompetence.

And, in comparison to other departments we've reviewed, there appears to be plenty of positions that are not necessary.

For example, the Aurora Fire Department has chiefs, assistant chiefs and what seems to be chiefs of chiefs.

It's bad enough the $165 million Aurora Police Palace was built with corruption and it's current chief, Kristen Ziman, is at the top of Aurora's Most Wanted List, but she is only one of many cops who spend their time at the palace instead of the streets.

Kristen Ziman's first act as police chief was to create the position of "deputy chief" which had been previously eliminated as "useless" and a "waste" by previously ousted Chief Greg Thomas (who didn't retire as portrayed, but instead is now the police chief in Darien).

Salary data is for most of 2015, so it doesn't reflect guaranteed increases for 2016 and may not include ALL compensation received for the entire year, such as all reimbursements, expenses, etc and does not include current or future benefits (health insurance, pension).

Remember, it's YOUR money.

NOTE: these salary figures also don't include certain perks for people like Kristen Ziman driving the APD tank, her own SUV, ordering herself a segway for fun, luxury travel for "conferences" and events or "meetings" with other cops at the Turf Room in North Aurora while she gets drunk.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just regular Aurorans trying to squeeze out a living while basking on the idylic shores of Lake Holiday.

Anonymous said...

How can you possibly justify all of this layered management and >$100,000 workers? It's all about public safety, right?

Anonymous said...

How can anyone justify police salaries like this?

Anonymous said...

You could not pay me enough to be a cop with Obamas black life matters hit squad out killing cops everyday. NO FRIGGIN WAY

Anonymous said...

How about publishing the library salaries also?

Anonymous said...

How can these lavish salaries be justified? This must include overtime, but with the average Auroran making about $60,000/yr, these figures are nuts. No way we need all those lieutenents, commanders, deputy chiefs, auxiliary battalion Chiefs, captains, assistant Chiefs and big Huey's. Make some of the managers start working 50 hours a week or more without overtime or comp time like is done in the business world. Salaries like this should require that people work long hours, don't go home at 3:30 every day and answer their phones evenings and weekends. Anyone who has a public safety manager from Aurora living in their neighborhood can attest to their lax hours, nice vacations and early retirements.

Anonymous said...

Why do I always see firemen playing outside. There is no need for them to work 24 hours (mostly watching tv or doing their books for their side jobs) They could work 8 hour shifts. The police need to get out of the offices and get out of the Starsky and Hutch under cover mentality. I see them eating together at the restaurant across from me. They seem to sit for hours. I do agree with the comment above, they are being hunted by thugs now and must be paid more. Look at how much those basketball and football players get for a game.

Kevin said...

One correction to 5:26 PM's excellent post:

the average Auroran making about $60,000/yr.

It is not the average Auroran making 60K a year, it is the average household income(as in median family income) in Aurora is $60,809 a year. That is a huge difference given most families in Aurora have multi-earners. Also the average household size in Aurora is greater than average so the disparity between what a cop makes and the average citizen is HUGE.

So, drum roll, cutting through it all the average person in Aurora makes a whopping $25,527 (these are all 2013 numbers). So your average Aurora cop is earning three, four, to five times what your average resident of Aurora makes.

Anonymous said...

I'm all for cops or firefighters making a living, but this is totally ridiculous. I had no idea it was this high for so many.

Fire department should be cut by 2/3rd or even better, just privatize it.

As for the police, it's outrageous to see those salaries and what they will get as pensions. Cops who work the streets are getting paid six figures and the cops at the "palace" are getting paid even more.

No wonder this city is headed toward bankruptcy.

Anonymous said...

An addition to 5:26's post:
Their huge pensions which they start in their 50's!

Anonymous said...

With all of that great economic development, we'll afford those exorbitant pensions and then some well into the future. Look at all those hotbeds of new tax base. Shodeen's River Edge, Broadway, Restaurant Row, Northgate, Lake St., E. New York., Hill Ave., I88 and Eola, all that new construction on Orchard and loads more. So happy we have an election soon so we can get rid of some posers.

Anonymous said...

Hey, We got a new Wayside Cross mission downtown, it brings in loosers from other towns.

Anonymous said...

We have that Silverplate building, beloved by the preservationinsts. Vacant for 20 years but, no worries, it's getting a spanky new mural. That'll generate some big bucks in taxes. Too bad we can't tax all the hot air bloviated by preservationists. Police and Fire salaries-pensions wouldn't be an issue.

Anonymous said...

How can you possibly pay the higher ups in Police and Fire over $200,000 in salaries while still paying their underlings over $100,000? People should take these jobs to serve the community, not make big bucks. Stop this.

Anonymous said...

Gotta love Illinois local government. There are over 7,000 units, each with never-ending tax money. Is it any wonder why there is so much abuse? From unrealistic salaries to nepotism to unnecessary administrative positions to double dipping to archaic work rules to padded overtime, there's simply too much government to watch.

Anonymous said...

And not one person running for Mayor (so far) will do anything to stop the taxpayer abuse. Chapa-LaVia, Saville, and Irvin all support the outrageous pay of union employees in the city. The other two are public sector teat suckers too.

Anonymous said...

Ever met Rosario DeLeon? He's been put in charge of various departments at the City over the past 20 yrs only to have ruined them.

He shouldn't have been appointed to anything except that he was crowned the "right Latino" when Weisner became Public Property Director in the 90's. DeLeon hitched himself to Weisner's coattails and has been riding undeserved favor ever since.

Undeserved? Yep. That's when unqualified, ethically challenged people are promoted into the ranks of City management and are kept there after repeated failure.

With his spectacular experience as a parking meter checker, the only working job he's ever had with the City, DeLeon certainly possesses the skill, knowledge and ability for all of the positions he's been given, right

For us taxpayers, it's unfortunate that this "emperor" never had any clothes in the first place. In fact, Rosario's been stark naked for a long time.

Rosario preaches accountability and integrity, yet they're absent from his own performance.

Want proof?

How about the fiasco with dead ash trees. Six years ago, there were thousands across the City. Rather than deal with them as a wildly important issue worthy of full attention, Aurora's residents were subjected to the "DeLeon factor." That's where the guy becomes evasive and put offish as he's deep in management thought yet ignores the problem. He's still at it with his comments about new developments in DuPage County being over planted with too many parkway trees as justification for his department shorting the public.

Sorry, DeLeon, but we all don't embrace the ghetto mentality of Aurora. We're all not satisfied with minimal standards and performance. If you weren't up to this problem, why were you put in charge of anything in the first place?

Too bad you didn't get lost six years ago. There was never a better issue for privatization. A good consultant and tree removal company, who actually knew what they were doing, could have saved the City lots of embarrassment and removed those dead trees systematically in a hurry. Everyone knows that we sure pay enough in taxes to have been entitled to effective service, if only just once.

But we weren't.

Anonymous said...

Why, the first time you stepped up and took responsibility was in a Sunday newspaper. Before that it was your juvenile communication and failure to return phone calls to constituents, aldermen and the media. Meanwhile, we residents in DuPage looked at hundreds of dead trees lining our streets year after year devaluing our properties and ruining our quality of life.

Way to answer the call, but we could have predicted your failed accountability. Rosario's dedication to half-assed performance is legendary. We always knew you were the smartest guy in the room and had the answer: let those dead trees rot and fall down on their own.

How about the City's strictly average snow removal operations that are under his command? Or vandalized street lights where replacement takes weeks, not days?

Or ignoring hundreds of resident issues and concerns year after year through the City's computer system? Check with the people at the Customer Service Department on that one. Betcha Rosario's set a record for putting his convenience above the needs of those of us who pay his salary.

Want more proof? How about his brother's rental property when he was head of code enforcement? He said he knew nothing about the violations, which were exposed by a neighbor and policeman speaking out at a City Council meeting, for crying out loud.

We don't mind Rosario pantsing himself on that one, but we do mind that he publicly embarrassed the City Council and all of City government. BTW, as director, he was paid to make sure violations were corrected by people like his brother before they became a public spectacle.

If the DeLeons clan can't handle responsibility, then all of them shouldn't be working for us. How about those weedy medians on N. Lake St? You know, the ones that embarrass the City each spring and make us look like a third world country. Rosario's the darling of social media for that annual boner.

Or how about the idiot hirings he's made. Or the disproportionate number of union grievances that are filed in his department as he screws over his employees. With the hours he spends cloistered away in the Personnel Department whispering over those chintzy-assed issues, it's no wonder Rosario can never get any real work done for us taxpayers. But that's his M.O.

How about Rosario's refusal to correct code violations at his own rental house on Pearl St., when he was the Director of Code Standards, no less? Why, Mayor Weisner didn't even know that his appointee was being prosecuted for that embarrassment, or that's what he told a newspaper reporter.

Way to keep a political mentor informed and violate the public trust at the same time.

That's brilliant efficiency, but how did he manage not to get fired after that freak show? His second scandal in Property Standards in two years? DeLeon still got a pass?

Anonymous said...

How about those weedy medians on N. Lake St? You know, the ones that embarrass the City each spring and make us look like a third world country. Rosario's the darling of social media for that annual boner.

Or how about the idiot hirings he's made. Or the disproportionate number of union grievances that are filed in his department as he screws over his employees. With the hours he spends cloistered away in the Personnel Department whispering over those chintzy-assed issues, it's no wonder Rosario can never get any real work done for us taxpayers. But that's his M.O.

How about Rosario's refusal to correct code violations at his own rental house on Pearl St., when he was the Director of Code Standards, no less? Why, Mayor Weisner didn't even know that his appointee was being prosecuted for that embarrassment, or that's what he told a newspaper reporter.

Way to keep a political mentor informed and violate the public trust at the same time.

That's brilliant efficiency, but how did he manage not to get fired after that freak show? His second scandal in Property Standards in two years? DeLeon still got a pass?

Want the ultimate assessment? Ask the people inside or outside of City Hall, who aren't a Mayoral sycophant, for their opinion. From trade contractor to lowly City employee to aldermen, you'll find that absolutely no one has any use for Rosario. That's the most honest performance appraisal of this guy who's been shown so much unreturned favor.

Rosario's major accomplishment will have nothing to do with his job. It'll be the shameful hiring of friends and relatives like his wife, brother, two sons, two brothers-in-law and other family members on the City's payroll. Let's thank all of the DeLeon's for that circus.

Are we to believe it's a coincidence that half of the DeLeon family couldn't get a job in the private sector yet ended up finding employment with Aurora?

The DeLeon's are the reason why the City desperately needs a nepotism law while Rosario's a living indictment of the City's rancid hiring system dictated by the Mayor's Office and carried out by his useless puppets in the Personnel Department.

His remembrance will feature integrity on a level equal to an underground sanitary sewer line. With an emphasis on rules which he never follows himself, he's a management ass hat all right, the flip side of a ridiculous union BA.

Without Weisner's sponsorship and protection, this jackass would have been fired long ago and, you know what? People all over the City know it. What a marvelous legacy for the Mayor and his BFF.

After 30 years, this clown makes over $150,000 on the taxpayer's dime. He'll be retiring soon so he's not fired by Mayor Chapa LaVia. After that, while still in his 50's, Rosario will begin collecting a six figure pension.

So Aurorans, get ready to fund "Full Family Employment" Rosario DeLeon's livelihood for another 30 years. Enjoy paying that obscene local tax bill for Aurora pensions. In another eight months, it'll be subsidizing a nice piece of useless freight.

Anonymous said...

...How much does a Police Patrol Officer make? The median annual Police Patrol Officer salary is $52,800, as of July 29, 2016, with a range usually between $43,977-$62,311...

So why is the average Aurora officer earning 2x the rational average salary with much better benefits than the national average?

Maria -Boo said...

Dam they banking

Anonymous said...

1:26 AM-

I googled the question too, here is what I found...

Average Police Officer Yearly Salary in Illinois. Police Officers earn a median salary of $73,140 per year.

Let's give the real answer, our officers get paid for what they will have to do. I have a friend who is an Aurora Police Officer and the stories of what he has seen is tragic. Are you willing to RUN TOWARDS gunfire, jump into the river or a retention pond to rescue someone, run into a burning house and try to save the occupants. I know that I am not and I am proud of those officers because they DO!

Anonymous said...

Nobody disputes that they do great work. But we dispute the worth of paying most of them over $100,000. We dispute the worth of paying lieutenents, commanders, deputy chiefs and Chiefs upwards of $150,000. We dispute that they retire in their 50's with luxury pensions only to take second jobs with other towns and counties. It's bullshit and everyone knows it. Most of all, we don't want OUR MONEY paying for it.

Anonymous said...

Do you want a 55 year old police officer running after a teenager that is trying to hurt your family? My father was a police officer for 30 years. He died 5 years after he retired. The shift work, and adrenaline dumps took a huge toll on his body. I was proud of the job he did, and all the money in the world cannot replace him, and did not make Christmas, holidays, and birthdays easy when I was a kid and he had to work.
I will happily allow MY MONEY to pay for those brave men and women who do what WE are not willing to do. If you are so angry- go get a police job, then you can have all the luxuries YOU BELIEVE the police have.

Anonymous said...

9:57 - you are ignorant of the mathematics behind the problem. Are you aware that an individual or company cannot actually purchase an annuity (which ahas inferior protections to an officers pension) that has a 3% yearly step up? There is a reason for that, they are forbidden by statute fro offering it because it is considered financially unsound and is prohibited. I would have no real issue if you pay the cops 100K a year if the pension amounted to 65% of your final 7 years of salary with only a inflation kicker.

Anonymous said...

To say nothing of the commanders, deputy chiefs, police chiefs and fire chiefs who have retired with a pension of >$100,000 while still in their 50's only to take a second public safety job with a salary of >$100,000. Sure doesn't sound like job stress took it out of these people. The "system" was not designed for 'retirees' to 'game it' and get rich. If you want to retire, then retire from public employment for good. I don't want my money paying a pension to someone who double dips. If the police and fire lobbyists would get out of the way, this practice would be prohibited as anyone can see that it is taxpayer abuse.

Anonymous said...

Can you say not sustainable?

Kevin said...

The issue with the salaries is not only the high salary but the pension problem it creates. Consider this the retirees are guaranteed a 3% a year increase. Below is the actual returns on investments for last year:

IMRF 0.2%

See the problem? 3% guaranteed increase to to those drawing a pension when you get a 0.2% return means you are in negative territory

Anonymous said...

The salaries as posted also include 3 years of backpay for a contract settled long overdue. These were not solely one year salaries.

Anonymous said...

Pensionable if ya leave within a year? More abuse.

Anonymous said...

Nope. Pension is based solely on base pay. Overtime and backpay do not raise a pension.

Anonymous said...

Oh, poor things. Must still be horrible retiring with pension/benefits at 50.

NueroSurgMike said...

Wow, this is amazing. Openline posts clear and convincing proof that the taxpayers in Aurora are being fiscally raped by the police and fire departments and what do the citizens do - they sleep. This apathy is why Aurora is such a loser city. Let me see, all the neighbor hood groups are silent about it, the local Teaparty group is silent about it, the Republicans are silent about it; it seems no one in Aurora cares enough to create a protest or do a damn thing.

I am so glad I just bid on a house in Indiana. I can't wait to leave this city of apathetic losers.

Anonymous said...

You just gotta laugh when you look at all those unnecessary overpaid positions. In case you didn't know it, government specializes in redundancy, not accomplishment and Aurora has made inefficiency an art form. So let's pay more people $160,000 to be lieutenants, captains, commanders, deputies, battalion boys, assistant Chiefs and chief of Chiefs. We enjoy paying your big salaries and benefits so you can retire in your early 50's, collect your $100,000 pension And work a second job. Taxpayer abuse is the American way.