Illinois public employees and retirees with $100,000+ paychecks grew from 109,881 (2019) to an all-time high of 122,258 in 2020 – costing taxpayers $15.8 billion.
Congressional "bailouts" made it possible. The recent $1.9 trillion American Rescue Act provided an additional $13.5 billion to Illinois state and local governments. (Look up your hometown here — $350 billion flowed to states and 30,000 communities.)
Auditors at OpenTheBooks.com compiled the list of six-figure earners from Freedom of Information Act requests.
Barbers at State Corrections trimmed off $115,000; janitors at the State Toll Highway Authority cleaned up $123,000; bus drivers in Chicago made $174,000; line workers on the Chicago Transit Authority earned $222,278; community college presidents made $418,677; university doctors earned up to $2 million; and 171 small town managers out-earned the Illinois governor ($181,670).
Our interactive mapping tool allows users to quickly review the 122,258 public employees and retirees across Illinois making more than $100,000 (by ZIP code). Just click a pin and scroll down to see the results in your neighborhood rendered in the chart beneath the map.
Auditing the largest pay and pension systems in Illinois:
Public schools (40,000) – Last year, nearly 24,500 educators earned a six-figure salary while more than 15,500 retirees received six-figure pensions. Most Illinois schools were not back to fulltime, in-person instruction as of March 2021.