Delaney's annual pension will top $80,000

News-DemocratJune 21, 2013 

The former St. Clair County Clerk facing allegations of drinking on the job and harassing employees can receive an annual pension of more than $80,000 when he turns 55 in May.

Bob Delaney resigned Wednesday from the clerk's post he's served in since 1999. He previously denied allegations from employees of racial discrimination, sexual harassment and other mistreatment.

On Friday, Delaney declined a request for an interview per the advice of his attorney.

Delaney, 54, will be eligible to receive 80 percent of his nearly $100,900 annual salary upon his birthday in May. Delaney's percentage is the maximum allowed within the retirement system because he has worked 34 years for the county.

His annual pension will be about $80,700, according to a formula provided by the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund.

The St. Clair County Board will consider filling the empty clerk position with former Democratic state representative Tom Holbrook during a meeting on Monday night.

Holbrook, 63, is currently the chairman of the state's Pollution Control Board, a full-time position with a $120,000 annual salary.

Holbrook could not be reached for comment Friday. He served as state representative for the 113th District from 1994 until his appointment as head of the Pollution Control Board in 2011.

State Rep. David Harris, a Republican from Mount Prospect, is a trustee on the board managing the state's General Assembly Retirement System. Harris said Holbrook would be eligible to begin receiving his state legislator pension once resigning from his state job at the Pollution Control Board.

There is no legal conflict with Holbrook receiving a state pension while also working for a municipality, Harris said.

"It is two separate activities. Whatever benefits he has earned in that system he is eligible for," Harris said. "An occupation with another unit of government or service, quite frankly, is separate and distinct under the General Assembly Retirement System. ... State representatives have a higher profile than other state employees, but it is not uncommon."

Harris said Holbrook could wait to draw the legislative pension, which some people choose to do because the federal government taxes the retirement benefits.

The General Assembly Retirement System did not have information available Friday on the pension amount Holbrook is eligible to receive.

The allegations against Delaney stem from an investigation conducted by Laura Beasley, the county's Equal Employment Opportunity officer. Beasley's investigation was spurred by a wrongful-termination complaint from Laura Romero. Delaney fired Romero, but she has been rehired at the St. Clair County Sheriff's Department.

Delaney has retained the legal counsel of James Williams of the Williams, Caponi and Associates law firm in Belleville. Four of Delaney's employees might file legal action against him in state or federal court, according to the county report.

Contact reporter Daniel Kelley at dkelley@bnd.com or 618-239-2501.

Contact reporter Daniel Kelley at dkelley@bnd.com or 618-239-2501.

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