MIAMI (CBS4) – Senior citizens living in Miami-Dade County will start to receive letters in the mail promising them a hundred dollars. The purpose of the money is to help off-set higher county fees put into effect because of the tough economy.

CBS4’s Jorge Estevez spoke to Miguel Betancourt, a senior citizen who received the letter in the mail. It wasn’t exactly a check in the mail, what Miguel received was a letter that promised a check of a hundred dollars.

“I do not spend on nothing, [I] only pay bills,” said Betancourt whose finances keep him up at night.

“Sometimes I am sleeping. I think I need send this one thousand dollars to this guy or five hundred to that guy,” said Betancourt.

Miami Dade County Commissioner for District 5, Bruno Barreiro, sponsored the Save Our Seniors Relief Fund where Residents ages 65 and older who have applied for and received Florida’s Homestead exemption for seniors as of September 23, 2010 will receive a check in the mail for $100 per household.

The goal is to off-set rising expenses among them an increase in certain taxes.

“If they send me 50 dollars, it is all right too,” said Betancourt.

In the letter Barreiro stated:
“Although, this check will not completely resolve your economic situation, I hope it will alleviate the cost you may incur as a result of the approved budget.”

With a broken AC, the money may come in handy, but the main focus of Betancourt’s hundred dollars will be for his finances.

“To pay bills. Pay bills. Pay bills. Pay bills,” said Betancourt.

CBS 4 News tried repeatedly to contact Commissioner Barreiro and only received a press release where it said the money is
coming from a general fund revenue. Critics have suggested this may be a calculated effort to persuade seniors to not sign a petition currently going around with the goal to have the Miami Dade County commissioners recalled and removed from office.


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