County Reviewing Its Employees' Benefits

Article excerpt

Byline: Robert Sanchez

Facing rising costs associated with providing salaries and benefits to county employees, the DuPage County Board is going to explore whether reforms could be made to help save taxpayers money in the future.

The board on Tuesday established a committee on human resources that will assess the "economic sustainability" of the county's total benefits package and recommend changes.

While anotherpanel was created earlier this year to address rising health care costs, county board Chairman Dan Cronin said there is a need to "re-evaluate" DuPage's entire benefits structure.

"Every unit of government, especially local government, now realizes that some of the benefits offered to public employees are too costly, too burdensome, and create too much of a disparity between those who get the benefits and those who pay the bill," Cronin said.

Input from county employees and DuPage business leaders will be sought to ensure personnel policies fairly compensate county staff while reflecting normal practices in the private sector, officials said.

The review comes as DuPage is dealing with 10 percent increases in health care insurance costs and Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund contributions. …