How many of us have health insurance for ourselves and our dependents whose premiums are paid entirely by our employer?

I would bet not one of us is that fortunate. This is the new benefit that will be given to the senior employees of the Village of Indiantown, including the Council. No other government employees in Martin County have medical benefits to match. I doubt if anything like this is offered to any elected official.

The stated purpose was to hire and retain employees. Council Member after Council Member said so. So how many employees does the Village have? There are two. Harold Brown and Susan Owen, the Clerk. Mr. Brown’s benefits are pursuant to his contract. That leaves one full-time employee.

How many does the Village expect in the future? From what I can see the Development Director, Public Works Director, Financial Director and probably the Parks Director will be outside contractors which fulfills the “Government Lite” philosophy that has been touted. So, the main beneficiaries of 100% paid medical premiums for employee and dependents would be the part-time elected Council.

Whether you are a federal, state, or local elected official, there is no longer any such notion that you want to serve your community and move on. There are two Martin County Commissioners that have now been there for decades. This is their career. City of Stuart has two Commissioners that are approaching a decade in office receiving $18k a year with medical and retirement benefits. Stuart Commissioner Leighton also works for Martin County Courts.

With a population of less than 6,000 residents, the Village of Indiantown has a budget of $55,000 for its 5 Council Members for salaries. Now, they will add to that cost the most generous medical package in at least the County if not the state. This is what is wrong with government. Indiantown is not a rich community. The median household income is $38,000 per year and almost 25% of the population is at or below the poverty line.

I guess the “public servants” aren’t in those numbers anymore.

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