After 2-month wait, DuPage election judges finally getting paid

  • Jean Kaczmarek

    Jean Kaczmarek

 
 

The checks finally are in the mail for more than 2,000 DuPage County election judges who have been waiting to be paid since November.

County Clerk Jean Kaczmarek said Friday she was "disappointed" to learn checks weren't mailed until Thursday for judges who worked the fall election -- and now that she oversees the election process, she pledged such delays won't happen again.

The county board on Tuesday dissolved the long-troubled election commission and transferred its functions to the clerk's office.

"As my first official act after assuming responsibility of elections, I pledge my commitment that future payments to election judges will be more timely," said Kaczmarek, a Glen Ellyn Democrat.

Kaczmarek said she has served as an election judge in recent years, including during early voting and as a technical judge.

"I know firsthand that the day is long and the work is hard," she said. "Judges deserve to be paid promptly."

Suzanne Fahnestock of the clerk's election department said the delay was caused by the process used by the former election commission.

That process included retrieving the judge's time sheets, verifying and entering information, and having the commission board approve a payroll report. In addition, an auditor needed to examine and approve the expenditure before the payroll was sent to the county finance department to process and issue the checks.

"Now that the clerk will be handling the approval and signing off on their payments, the process should be expected to run more quickly," Fahnestock said.

Kaczmarek said judges play a key role in successful elections.

"I hope judges will honor us with their service in upcoming elections," she said.

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