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The Illinois Department of Transportation is hiring 16 employees with salaries of up to $100,000 even though critics say they'll duplicate work done by existing staff.

IDOT's new "operations supervisors" will not be union members. The agency ran ads about the new jobs shortly after employees now doing similar work won the right to join a union.

Operating Engineers Local 150 says the new jobs aren't necessary. Union attorney Ken Edwards says nobody can figure out why they're needed.

IDOT spokesman Josh Kauffman says the posts have been planned since 2010 and are necessary for supervising field technicians.

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