CHICAGO (CBS) — The head of the Cook County Board says officials have reluctantly agreed to pay more than half a million dollars to people who were fired for apparently political reasons by Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios, reports WBBM Political Editor Craig Dellimore.

County Commissioners made it clear they were unhappy about paying $529,000 to eleven employees they claim were illegally fired for political reasons from the assessor’s office.

County Board President Toni Preckwinkle says the federal monitor has decided the claims based on the Shakman Decree against political hiring and firing.

“I believe that the board had no choice but to approve settlement for the 11 people let go. However, I believe that settling these cases moves us further along toward compliance with the Shakman Decree,” said Preckwinkle.

Individual employee claims range from $1,000 to $95,000.

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