MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – You can spot police officers, firefighters and city workers throughout the City of Mobile dedicating their time to improving the area where we live and work.
Both current and retired city employees spoke out at Tuesday’s public meeting about the proposed 2015 budget. Most were upset over what they consider to be broken promises about health insurance benefits.
“The appropriate and honorable thing to do would be to honor promises made to employees,” one citizen voiced.
With the proposed budget, city employees will get a pay raise but they will also have to pay more for health insurance.
For retirees, the city plans to eliminate coverage for those on Medicare within the next few years.
“When we came to work 30 plus years ago we were promised we could have these benefits when we retired. it was benefits in lieu of lower pay and that’s how they attracted a lot of people,” said a retired police officer.
The proposed budget includes more than $14 million for capital projects and some think a portion of that money needs to go to city employees.
“I agree there needs to be an increase in the capitol projects budget but not a drastic change in the healthcare,” another citizen voiced.
Most want the City Council to send the budget back to the Mayor for revisions.
Mayor Stimpson said he understands everyone is not happy about the changes but “we cannot ignore our responsibility in dealing with this challenge. We cannot wait on someone else to solve this problem.”