FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry has vetoed an ordinance that would have changed 2017 health insurance deductibles for certain retired Fort Wayne firefighters.
The veto came down Friday. President of the Fort Wayne Professional Firefighters Local 124, Jeremy Bush, tells WOWO News the City of Fort Wayne administration eliminated the lowest deductible plan, offered to retired firefighters, without notice. Therefore, doubling their potential deductible expenses.
“Our collective bargaining agreement with the City of Fort Wayne includes a provision for inclusion in meetings that lead to increases in the insurance costs. This unfortunately did not take place…“said Bush. “Additionally, prior to City Council involvement, several attempts were made to meet and discuss this issue with the City Administration. They declined to meet with us.”
In a statement released by Mayor Henry, he said he recognizes the concerns, but the changes would undermine the Collective Bargaining Process.
“I appreciate the position taken by the firefighters regarding their concerns… However, the agreement that the firefighters union negotiated provides a mechanism for addressing those concerns, and that procedure should be followed,” said Henry. “The ordinance that was brought forward and approved by City Council undermines the very nature of the bargaining process….”
Mayor Henry went on to say that the ordinance would ultimately not be approved due to City Council recently passing the budget for 2017. He said the ordinance would result in additional expenses and push the city of their already approved budget.