MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Mayor Carlos Gimenez has vetoed a controversial commission vote which raise the cost of health insurance for police because he says it would result in too many layoffs.

Last week, Miami-Dade police officers and county employees filed into commission chambers to voice their concerns about contributing an additional 5-percent of their pay toward healthcare coverage, which would double the tab to 10-percent for thousands of county employees.

The commission ultimately decided 7-6 not to force various county labor unions, including the Dade Police Benevolent Association and the Government Supervisors Association of Florida OPEIU Local 100, to pay an additional 5-percent of their salary to their health insurance after the unions have already made major concessions.

Mayor Gimenez warned commissioners that the vote could have harsh consequences.

“It could reduce public safety in this county and that’s squarely on the shoulders the Miami-Dade County Commission and the commissioners who voted to reduce the taxes and then decided not to do the right thing,” said Gimenez, adding pink slips could go out in a matter of weeks.

The county estimates about 154 police officers, 145 corrections officers, and 100 government supervisors would have lost their jobs.

Wednesday’s move by the mayor will force the board to tackle the issue once again when it meets again on January 24th.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed material for this report)

Comments (4)
  1. B McLaughlin says:

    Wow. A WHOLE 5% ! Shocking! I wonder if any of these pampered, underworked, overpaid union people realize that the MAJORITY of Americans pay 50% of their health insurance costs. If anybody still wonders what’s ruining this country, one of the answers is labor unions.

    1. NIcky says:

      It is not 5% of the cost of their policy, it is 5% of their gross income (salary) on top of the 5% of their salary that they are already contributing (which equates to a total of 10% of their gross pay going toward their insurance). In addition, they are not allowed to opt out, they have to pay it even if they don’t get the County health insurance.

    2. Sanz says:

      People should really learn the facts before they speak, an additional 5% makes a huge difference when they have already taken so much. It’s an EXTRA 5%, which by definition means, in ADDITION to what’s already being taken from their base pay!!! When you tally it all up it’s more like a 20% pay cut. I understand we have a budget and we need to fill in the gap, but having tunnel vision does not help anyone. The Mayor needs to seek other options, there are far too many programs in the county that we the tax payers can be without, most of us do not qualify for them anyway. Acting like a bully and threatening lay-offs helps no one, including his re-election campaign.

    3. Getinformedfirst says:

      You should get better informed. It’s not just 5% in total. It would a 10% deduction of the paycheck on top of what is paid for premium. Our family is paying almost $900 dollars monthly for insurance on top of the 5%.

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