— The State Journal Register Newspaper | Finke, D. —
Gov. Bruce Rauner Tuesday signed into law a bill that would outlaw a practice that he himself has employed.
Rauner signed House Bill 5121 that will stop the practice of “offshoring” that involves hiding salaries of governor’s office employees in other state agencies.
“Unlike previous administrations, we have been transparent in reporting headcount and salaries of all governor’s office employees,” Rauner said in a statement.
That’s not the way Comptroller Susana Mendoza saw it. Mendoza pushed for the bill saying that offshoring provides a distorted picture of the state budget and what kind of money is available to spend and where.
Mendoza said that a recent analysis showed that only 47 of the governor’s 110 staffers were actually paid from his office budget. The other 63 were paid out of agency payrolls. If all of them were paid from the governor’s budget, she said, the office payroll would be $10 million instead of $4.6 million.
Rauner is hardly alone in offshoring employee salaries. Illinois governors for decades have engaged in the practice.
In signing the bill, Rauner said a law should be passed that applies the same standards to all five of the other statewide elected officials.