Illinois Senate Clears Payroll Transparency Bill

May 4, 2018

Comptroller Susana Mendoza provided these infographics when she first announced the "Truth in Hiring" bill.
Credit Comptroller Susana Mendoza

The Illinois Senate passed a measure Thursday that would require the governor to disclose his total office staff and pay them all from his own payroll. 

It started as an initiative called the “Truth in Hiring Act” which came from Comptroller Susana Mendoza. The measure aims to combat “off-shoring,” an effort to make payrolls look leaner by paying some employees out of other agencies' budgets. 

Supporters of the bill say it’s been done by both Democratic and Republican governors for years.

State Sen. Jil Tracy, a Republican from Quincy, says the practice can be useful. She says early childhood development is an example:

“It operates primarily on federal funds," said Tracy. "The office of governor runs on general revenue funds so it cannot receive these federal funds. So an intergovernmental agency agreement is then used so that another state agency can act as the fiscal agent and receive the funds and pay the governor’s office staff for their services.”

Still, the measure to end the practice passed the House unanimously, with only seven “no” votes in the Senate. The bill now heads to Governor Bruce Rauner's desk.

Back in March, when the idea was introduced, the Governor’s office said they would be open to discussion, but comments were not immediately available after the vote.