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Auditor Jessica Thomas will continue receiving a salary from Peoria County, for now at least

A gavel rests on a judge's bench in a blurry courtroom. The text "WCBU Courts" sits on top of that photo.

Auditor Jessica Thomas will continue receiving her salary from Peoria County for the time being.

Judge James Mack denied a motion by the county on Thursday seeking to place Thomas' salary into an escrow account, pending their appeal of a preliminary injunction requiring the county government to continue paying her.

Lisa Meador is the attorney representing Peoria County in the case.

"The appellate court could determine enjoinment is wrongful, and thus the salary was wrongfully paid," Meador said.

Thomas' attorney, Justin Penn, said the preliminary injunction requires the status quo to be maintained. In this case, he said that means Thomas should continue to be paid pending the appellate court ruling.

"They said repeatedly this is not personal, but this feels a little more personal," Penn said.

Mack ultimately agreed.

"If I were to grant escrow, she wouldn't get paid. It wouldn't maintain the status quo until the appellate court rules," he said.

Mack said if the appellate court rules to overturn the injunction, Peoria County can sue Thomas for reimbursement. Meador said the county would do so, if that's the outcome.

An appellate court hearing date hasn't been set yet.

Jessica Thomas is a member of the WCBU Community Advisory Board.

Tim is the News Director at WCBU Peoria Public Radio.