Published DateTo the editor,
I recently attended the Belknap County Budget Meeting in Laconia. This meeting was well attended, and lots of folks had a chance to give their thoughts about the various spending line items and possible county tax increase.
There were some that argued that any cuts would result in county employees not getting a raise and possibly having to contribute a bit more to their health care costs. While I can sympathize with folks wanting to keep their level of pay, it is my opinion that the obvious escaped them. Many of us taxpayers are already paying more per month for our health care, thanks to the passage of ObamaCare. For me, that increase is just over one hundred dollars a month. Many small business owners pay even more than I do in this difficult economy. Contrast that with county employees, who contribute approximately5 percent towards their health care costs. It would seem reasonable to me that they could share some of the increased burden, just like the rest of us.
I do not begrudge county employees a livable wage and a fair benefit package. But they need to be reminded that every penny that they earn comes out of the taxpayers' pocket. We can no longer sustain the current levels of pay and benefits, especially when so many of the county residents are struggling to make ends meet. That is just not right, and something has to give. In all fairness, I think that should be the county employees.