To The Daily Sun,
County politics are often overlooked in the unending barrage of political information, so why should you care? The people who work for the county are your neighbors, friends, relatives, old school chums, or your children or grandchildren attend the same schools as theirs, perhaps they go to your church or shop in the same stores, eat at the same restaurants, in other words, they are like us.
As you may know, the political power struggle between the Belknap County Delegation's Executive Committee and the Belknap County Commission has put our county employees in yet another unnecessary situation. The latest development is that the county is telling these employees that they must pay the county portion of their medical insurance premium in addition to the employee portion.
The starting hourly wage for a full-time licensed nurses aide is $12.80 plus benefits, or $26,624. a year. If these workers require a family medical plan (three or more members) the cost will be $889.50 a month for November and December and perhaps beyond. With their low wages, they already qualify for the New Hampshire Health Protection Program provided through Medicaid. Is it the intent of the executive committee, to force these full-time workers and their families onto Medicaid? The committee has already denied them their 1.5 percent raise. Once again it isn't about lack of funds, it is about power, political power.
The public is invited to the finance committees meeting on Monday, Oct. 27, where the decision to fund the employee's health insurance will be decided.
The employees' representatives have researched and endorsed the following candidates for state representatives: Rich Leonard, David Russell, and Peter Bolster — Alton, Barnstead, Gilmanton; Bruce Marriot — Barnstead; Ruth Gulick — New Hampton, Center Harbor; Lisa DiMartino, Nancy Frost, and Dorothy Piquado, Sandra Mucci — Gilford, Meredith; Dennis Fields and Ian Raymond — Tilton, Sanbornton; George Condodemetraky and Ron Cormier — Belmont; Beth Arsenault, David Huot, Maureen Baxley, Thomas Dawson, and Kate Miller — Laconia.
State Senate: Andrew Hosmer — Belmont, Gilford, Laconia; Carolyn Mello — Tilton, Center Harbor, New Hampton
County Commissioner: Dave Pollack, Laconia, New Hampton, Sanbornton.
We believe that here in Belknap County people respect each other, we keep commitments, we appreciate those who work for us, and we don't use them as pawns in nasty political games. We are better than that. Please don't tune out this issue ... vote to end this expensive legal fiasco.
Spouses of Belknap County Nursing Home Residents:
Dick Labbe, Laconia
Stan O'Neil, Laconia
Catherine Albison, Laconia
Pam Child, Gilford
Thea Aloise, Gilford
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