Think Tank: Illinois Public Pay Scales Out Of Sync With Private Sector

CHICAGO (CBS) — A conservative think tank is warning that public sector pay scales are out of balance with those in the private sector.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s John Cody reports, Ted Dabrowski, vice president of the free market think tank the Illinois Policy Institute, found Illinois state worker pay has jumped 18 percent from 1992 to 2008.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s John Cody reports

But private sector pay scales dropped 2 percent in that time, he said.

“Public sector pay and benefits are high, and it’s the private sector that has the tax increases that have to pay for them,” he said. “So we need to get things back in line, because today, they’re out of sync.

Dabrowski says the average State of Illinois state employee is paid $69,500, versus $56,500 for the equivalent job in the private sector.

Dabrowski says over a 40-year careers, the public sector worker will get 510 more days off than the private sector equivalent.

  • Joe Government

    Once again we don’t take into account the BONUS and for profit status that the private sector gets – sell more Widgets and Cogs more money in their stocks and 401k please stop the bs. All jobs have trade offs – pick the best fit but don’t whine later because no job has it all

    • Joe Worker

      Joe Government needs to come into reality! The % of private sector employees that receive those perks are less than 5%. The ONLY BS is from the overpaid and underworked government and union workers!

  • Don Snafio

    Wake up Joe Government, private sector workers fund their own 401ks and retirements, while the public sector benefits are paid through taxes. How can you not know that?

  • Jack

    10K to do the same job with much less efficiency and oversight – where do I sign up

    Dear Joe Government – REALITY CHECK – the big wigs in the marble offices get the BONUS money – those in cubicle-land don’t see the extra money, have to pay more for health insurance and fund our own retirement plan – plus, pay for tolls, parking (or train), etc – WITH OUR OWN MONEY

    I did sell the most Widgets – and guess what – I was allowed to KEEP MY JOB

  • Citizen of Chicago

    From 1992 to 2008 thats 16 years of just over 1% raise per year with NO cost of living increase. And YES public employees pay for their own pensions and 401k’s plus medical benefits just look at anyones pay stub! their are no matching funds and they have to contribute by law to the pension fund. They can’t choose any retirement fund but the one selected by the corrupt politicans whose connected friend runs the fund and even if the fund looses money they still collect their skyrocketing fees. Just ask Daley’s nephew’s about the 50 MILLION he got to invest with NO experience but gets $250,000 fees every year

  • snicks

    The working conditions in the private sector are often times way better as well. I have worked both. Give me private sector any day. And,Don – the public sector pay into retirements and their own type of 401K plans WITH NO employee matches ever. Public sector also pays just as much for health insurance premiums and out of pocket costs.

    This bickering between the two must stop. Joe is right, pick the best fit for you.

  • Don Snafio

    Public sector workers pay a much smaller fraction for their insurance and retirement, it’s not even close. Plus pension accounts are aided by taxes, 401ks are not. That is the big difference.

  • Mary

    My job do not have 401’s plans, retirement plans or any other type of benefit plan. We get a insurance plan that cover death up to $10,000 and health, no dental or eye care that you have to pay for out of your pocket. We very seldom get a increase in pay maybe every to years except for those in the administration department they secretly receive pay increase or benefits to accommendate themselves. We are a substance abuse program. I have worked their over 23 years and my salary is not $30,000.00 annually way below. So, don’t try to sell me on the States pay increase for their workers.

    • yo mama

      Mary, the reason you make ‘way below’ $30k a year has got nothing to do with your place of employment (i.e. in the public sector) and everything to do with the fact that you don’t even have a sixth grader’s grasp of English grammar and syntax. No one to blame but yourself.

  • dan

    To Joe & Snicks-Pick?

    To Jack-Sign up?

    Don’t you fools know you have to be connected to get the cushy high paying jobs? How many of the chumps that line up and apply or take the tests actually get the jobs. When I was a kid the only way you could get into the “union” is if your dad or uncle or neihbor was “in” the union.

    The only jobs in the public sector open to anyone are the lowest paying-it’s all rigged and fixed and despite all the hype about inspector generals and such it always will be.

    • chicagogal

      I got my job by going to college, getting two degrees, and then by interviewing at several schools until somebody called me back. There was no parent, friend or backdoor arangement for me to get my job. Quite frankly, when I got my private sector job, the only reason I got it was because I knew someone who got me in….door swings both ways Dan, don’t be bitter because it didn’t work that way for you.

  • Chicagogal

    People keep fighting this fight and it doesn’t make sense. I’ve had private and public sector jobs, and hands down, I liked my private sector job more. There are more perks for the private sector, work conditions are better, profit sharing and 401k matching are definitly superior then to the public worker’s. The big issue is that what’s at stake. Does the private sector worker really believe they will pay less taxes, or get better pay/benefits if we make all sevices a part of the private sector? They won’t, private sector workers will all have the same problems as before….this is a game made by the wealthy to divided the common man and continue to put money in their pockets….Stop the Insanity !!

  • Jeff

    All these people complaining about pensions NOW, where were you when all the private sector was wiping there A$$es with $100.00 bills Private sector people make WAY more in salary, bonuses, and perks and when the times were good nobody cared and these CEO’s are laughing to the bank with stock options, bonuses, and high salaries. Remember private sector = FOR PROFIT. Just because times are bad doesn’t mean it’s time to point the finger at people who have security. Those who have security traded big profit, salary, bonuses, and perks for that. They really don’t increase as much as the private sector, and when it goes up again all the private sector people will go back to the high life. Look at your Banks and Financial Sector – they were really hurting weren’t they as they gave out bad loans.

    If you can’t wait that long you should have seen this coming and switched to the public sector.

    Call the whambulance and get a ride.

  • Don Snafio

    In the end it doesn’t matter. The current pension account set up in the public sector is already underwater and unsustainable, so things will have to be changed and rightfully so. In both public and private sectors, the individual workers themselves should be 100% accountable to fund their own retirement and no one else. Simple enough.

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