Preckwinkle defends bodyguard raises

October 3, 2011 4:25:53 PM PDT
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle defended pay raises she gave to her three bodyguards while the county has a $315 million budget deficit.

Preckwinkle said her predecessor, Todd Stroger, had four to five bodyguards. But she stressed that she cut the size of the detail, which saves money for the taxpayers.

"The initial idea was that we were going to have four people on this detail; we have three. We don't pay anybody overtime, and we've expected them to work longer hours. So the compensation is based on the fact that we have fewer people, and we're requiring them to work more. I often spend 12, 13 hours a day on the job, and my detail is with me. And as I said, they're not compensated for overtime in the way that other county employees might be," Preckwinkle said.

Preckwinkle said she has fewer bodyguards than Ill. Governor Pat Quinn or Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

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