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While local and state government agencies are curbing services, furloughing employees and laying off workers due to shrinking budgets, a 4 On Your Side Investigation found at the same time, taxpayers are shelling out millions of dollars to retiring workers for unused sick days.

“We need to make some changes,” said Colorado Springs City Council Member Lisa Czelatdko. “We’ve created this legacy of debt so no, it’s not responsible.”

But it continues to happen.

With the banking of sick days that employees can do, it’s really turned into a cash bonus at retirement, which wasn’t necessarily the intent,” said Mac Clouse, a finance professor at the University of Denver’s Daniels College of Business.

Clouse said the amounts being paid out will likely grow even larger as more and more baby boomers in government service reach retirement age.