Kane County board chairman sued over raises

  • Karen McConnaughay

    Karen McConnaughay

  • Jim MacRunnels

    Jim MacRunnels

Updated 12/14/2010 6:29 PM

Kane County Board Chairman Karen McConnaughay was sued Tuesday by a former political opponent over raises she gave to 15 senior county workers.

Jim MacRunnels of Elburn alleges in the suit that McConnaughay doesn't have the authority under county law to give out raises. Salaries have to be voted on by the Executive Committee and the county board, he contends.


MacRunnels ran for the Republican nomination for county board chairman in February 2008, but was beaten by McConnaughay, who received 67 percent of the vote.

The suit does not say when the raises were handed out nor how much they are.

McConnaughay, according to the suit, "has engaged in a practice of giving raises to officers and employees and setting new pay levels without getting either the Executive Committee's approval or approval by the County Board."

Fifteen employees were mentioned in the suit, and McConnaughay is the sole defendant.

An anonymous woman delivered a letter to the 26 county board members at their meeting Tuesday morning, announcing the suit. The letter said the lawsuit was being filed on behalf of "the 190,000 Kane County households," and that the litigant could produce actuarial tables that prove that over the length of service, including pension, the raises could cost county taxpayers more than $20 million.

The tables were not attached to the suit.

MacRunnels has asked Kane County Circuit Judge Thomas Mueller to issue a temporary injunction preventing the raises from being enacted while the suit is heard. It has a case management court date of 9 a.m. March 31.

MacRunnels also asked the county board to investigate McConnaughay's actions. McConnaughay said she was aware of the lawsuit, but declined to comment.