A proposal to slash the city’s health-care costs, through passage of an ordinance that would reset the benefits of city employees and retirees, is drawing attention this weekend.
Firefighters union leaders are rallying opponents in an effort to challenge a proposal introduced by City Council President Steven Merolla and Councilman Edgar N. Ladouceur, who say it would save the city $5 million per year.
Under the proposal, minimum amounts for employees’ co-payments at emergency rooms, doctor’s offices and other providers and for health-insurance deductibles would be written into the city’s code of ordinances.
The sponsors of the proposal, which is on the council’s agenda for Monday night, say the changes are in line with health benefits offered to state employees, and that the proposed amendment to the ordinances is not an end-run around collective bargaining.
The current existing ordinance has some language that protects collective bargaining rights.