Challenger Banek Calls Coroner’s Pay Raise Bid ‘Shameful’
May 11, 2020
For immediate release
GREEN OAKS—Coroner candidate Jennifer Banek is urging the Lake County Board to follow the lead of its financial and administrative committee and freeze the pay of the county coroner for the next four years.
“Requesting a raise during this healthcare and economic crisis is shameful,” Banek said. “While we are facing double-digit unemployment rates, it is insensitive and irresponsible to consider raises for our county officials,” she added. “County officials have a guaranteed paycheck, unlike many Lake County residents.”
The County Board is expected to vote on the salary freeze at its Tuesday, May 12, meeting.
The County Board’s Financial and Administrative Committee voted April 16 to freeze the salaries of three elected county officials for four years. County officials’ salaries must be set six months before they take office, and the coroner is one of three officials who will face voters in November.
While requesting the salary increase before the committee, Cooper, a dentist, said that “like many people in this country, I cannot survive on one salary alone.” Coroner Cooper’s annual salary is $127, 874 plus $6,500 from the state.
“The County Board shouldn’t tie its hands by committing to a raise when the board is slashing expenses amid the pandemic,” Banek said. “We don’t know when the economy will bounce back.”
Banek, a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), or nurse anesthesiologist, is in the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic as she works in intensive care units and surgical centers in the Chicago metro area and southeastern Wisconsin.
Banek is a board member for the Illinois Association of Nurse Anesthetists (IANA) and a committee member for the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.
She is also a member of the Cook Memorial Library Board and a Captain in the U.S. Army Reserve. Banek was mobilized to Qatar from November 2019 through January 2020.
Call 847-224-4806 or email BanekforCoroner.com.