According to a report from the Associated Press, instead of giving bigger pay rises to its 5,000 full-time workers last year, Milwaukee opted to make its pension plan more generous.
Under the new rules:
- employees, who had worked past their retirement dates, could collect retirement benefits retroactively, and
- employees could be claim a larger share of their unused sick time at retirement
However, it came to light that under the new rules County Executive F Thomas Ament, who became eligible to retire in 1996, would receive a lump sum payment of $2.3 million, while several other officials would receive payments of $1 million or more.
Outraged citizens groups are leading a drive to recall Ament and other members of the 25-person county board, while Ament has filed a lawsuit challenging the signatures that the group has gathered in its effort to force a recall election, the AP reports.
The state Justice Department’s criminal division is investigating the matter.