The Health Insurance Victory

October 5, 2011
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Some people fight to win and some people fight to lose.

The vote earlier this week by the Common Council to give the OK for the so-called local option in authorizing a municipality to implement health care changes that would amount to almost $2 million in savings for the local taxpayers, was something almost demanded by Mayor Carlo DeMaria.

At the same time, we find it somewhat strange and disappointing that candidate for mayor Peter Napolitano failed to vote affirmatively for the measure. He said he needed more information on the matter.

Four other common councilors in all joined Napolitano and voted against the measure, which will have the power to bring down the costs for the city to contract for health insurance to pay city employees and will give to city employees lower premiums in paying for their health insurance.

Mayor DeMaria made it crystal clear that this measure needed to pass for the good of the city and for the good of everyone on city paid for health insurance in Everett.

And he is right.

With the Board of Aldermen aboard on this measure and now with the City Council’s OK, it is on to the mayor to negotiate with city unions.

The savings, as delightful as $2 million sounds, is better than paying $2 million more for  the same coverage with a slightly higher co-pay.

In other words, the city doesn’t now get an extra $2 million in its account. It is simply $2 million less the city has to spend to insure its employees in the coming year.

If that can happen every year for the next five years, the taxpayers will save a minimum of $10 million.

Can you imagine how much lower the commercial and residential tax rate would have been today if this had been done five years ago.