Board says police chief can have $250k in salary, pension
BY BILL BIRD firstname.lastname@example.org January 24, 2013 9:04PM
Naperville Chief of Police Robert Marshall talked to reporters after a bond hearing for Elzbieta Plackowska, 40 of Naperville for the murder of two children in her care. | Rich Hein~Sun-Times
Updated: February 26, 2013 6:41AM
Naperville Police Chief Robert W. Marshall will be paid more than $250,000 in salary and pension this year, following a decision by the city’s police pension fund board.
Board members voted 4-1 Wednesday to allow Marshall to continue collecting the pension he drew upon retiring seven years ago from the police force. Panel members decided Marshall did not re-enter active police service last year, when he became chief.
Marshall started on the force as a patrolman and rose in 1992 to the rank of captain. He resigned in 2005 to take the job of assistant Naperville city manager and served in that post until May, when he was appointed chief of police.
He spent 28 years with the police department prior to his retirement. The pension fund board’s decision means he will be paid $151,000 this year as chief and collect a police pension of $101,000.
Marshall on Thursday said pension fund board members deliberated in a closed session before making their ruling.
“I am pleased by the decision of the pension board,” Marshall said. His attorney, Tom Radja, “made a good, solid legal argument for the benefits I earned and started receiving since 2005, and that those (benefits) should not be diminished.”
The Illinois Department of Insurance last year contended Marshall re-entered active police service when he accepted appointment as chief. That meant he was ineligible to continue drawing an estimated $75,000 annually from the police pension fund for his prior service, department officials argued.
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office represents the department of insurance. Pension fund board members in October unanimously voted to allow both Madigan’s office and the city of Naperville to intervene in the pension dispute.
City officials last year said they had no objection to Marshall drawing his pension while serving as chief. Radja argued Marshall has not re-entered the police pension fund.
“The pension code is very clear,” he said, noting that in order to be re-entered into the fund, Marshall would have to have been sworn in last year as an officer, which he was not.
Radja said Marshall “worked 28 years for the department, and he earned that pension.”
Marshall is working without a contract as chief.
The city’s arrangement with him is that, should he serve 10 years or more in his new position, his pension contributions will be put toward the Illinois Sheriff’s Law Enforcement Pension program. Should he serve fewer than 10 years, his contributions go toward the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund.
Marshall said he currently does not have a retirement plan, as his police service credits from the IMRF have been suspended since 2005. That matter is being appealed, he said.