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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The June Payday

Well its June again and time for the town hall employees to get their twice a year insurance buyout checks as part of a union contract that is best an absurd ripoff of taxpayers. Under the contract, the town hall union including at least two supposed managers who should not even be allowed into the bargaining unit, are eligible to receive a whopping 51% of whatever premium the town would pay for health insurance. That includes either family or individual coverage and the family coverage could have jumped quite a bit this year over last year given industry trends.

We love to point out how some employees rip off the town by pulling a "Desso" a double dipping routine on insurance. One, the Assessor, a department head who should not even be allowed in the bargaining unit, gets public paid health insurance from the State as a retiree. Obviously he does not need to charge town taxpayers for insurance but he happily takes a single coverage buy out check anyway. The other favorite is the full time Troy fireman who moonlights as a full time Fire Marshall here. He gets public funded health insurance from the City of Troy and has never been in the town's insurance policy. He is the happy recipient of a town check in two installments which last year was over $3000 and this year could reach $4000 with premium increases. These numbers are paid out TWICE a year tepresenting only half of what they are paid not to take the coverage here which they don't need and already receive from taxpayers at either the City or State level. One of his two 2007 checks is pictured above. Remember, he's getting paid for not taking insurance he never took to begin with because taxpayers already pay for his insurance as a full time employee of the City of Troy!

No wonder the union refuses to agree to a new contract that hopefully takes away this wasteful disregard of taxpayers. They will keep the old contract which the town is forced to honor under the Taylor Law until and unless a new agreement is reached. This taxpayer ripoff shows a total lack of concern for the growing deficit estimated at $171,000 and it appears the only way to stop the buyouts is by getting tough with the employees. That means layoffs especially in the Building Department which is grossly overstaffed with 3 full time code enforcement people at a time when demand for their service is down due to falling building permit demand due to the economy.

It is also note worthy that Brunswick gets by these days with one code enforcement officer and its a town about our size. But some of these folks have political juice with certain board members and that includes the clerical staff.

So happy payday town hall employees! Don't think of forgoing the checks to help deal with the deficit. Just say "I want more!"

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