Coral Gables: Teamsters and other Unions At Odds With The Taxpayers

Next to the City Commission, which has been unable to resolve the growing financial problems of the city, the police, firefighter and, now the general employee unions, are opposed to finding a solution to the financial stability of the city.  There views are that the city of Coral Gables is a wealthy community and able to finance well paid employees.  If this was true Coral Gables would be the only city or county in the whole US that is in that category.

The choices are clear, and they have been made clear by the the city manager.  Either the unions accept salaries and benefits that are reasonable and sustainable (and, indeed, I would say competitive) in the coming years or see the number of positions fall.  While the public security personnel contend that they are indispensalbe to the city, there is no single employee, either supervisor or staff feel that are indispensable to the future of the city.  The unions’ arrogance is only exceeded by their indifference to the heavy penalties the citizens are paying through higher and higher property taxes to pay their salaries, pensions and other multiple benefits.

Quoting the Teamsters from the contract negotiations (and the recent Impasse Hearing), “…it is difficult to believe that Coral Gables has transformed itself from prince to pauper within the space of a few years…” and “Apparently marginally increased taxes during a time of economic uncertainty are not the price that will be paid by Coral Gables’ affluent resident…”.  How out of touch can a union be.

About Stephen E. McGaughey
International consultant in economic development programs and projects

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