The city of Chicago pays nearly $600,000 for Ald. Ed Burke's bodyguard protection annually, according to numbers released following a Better Government Association (BGA) lawsuit against the police. The 2009 numbers released show a top police officer in the detail made $150,000, while three others made over six figures and one part-time officer made $25,000. The grand total of the bill was $595,000 and does not include health or pension benefits.
In January, the BGA filed a lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department asking for the release of records related to police protection for the 14th Ward alderman. The suit claims the CPD has refused to release records that adhere to a Freedom of Information Act request submitted by the good government non-profit group last August. It was reported last year that Burke, the powerful chairman of the City Council's Finance Committee, is one of four public officials with a security detail.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel said earlier this summer that the city would cut the number of officers in half due to the major budget gap. Emanuel also said he will further review Mayor Richard Daley's security detail too. Burke has had bodyguard protection since the 1980s during the highly contentious "Council Wars," and he has contended he still needs the protection.