Healthcare Costs Cause Job Cuts In Jackson - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Healthcare Costs Cause Job Cuts In Jackson

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JACKSON, MI (WLNS) - Some people who live in Jackson are applauding the concessions made by four different unions.

It's a move that city officials say will keep people working.

6 News Nick Perreault tells us why these jobs were on the chopping block to begin with.

It has to do with the rise in healthcare costs. Just four months ago the city of Jackson learned it's going to cost them $5.1 million for healthcare in 2015, a 23 percent increase from the year before.

City Manager Patrick Burtch says a Jackson police officer, fire fighter and two other positions were set to be cut at Tuesday night’s council meeting.

Fortunately those respective unions agreed to move their healthcare plans to a self-funded plan which will save them roughly $700, enough to keep those positions.

"I think it's a good plan, it moves us forward it's a step in the right direction, if fact the whole budget was a step in the right direction to get us in fiscal solid ground,” said Patrick Burtch, Jackson City Manager.

"We got it done in a timely manner so that we didn't find ourselves in a situation where we had to lay people off and then call them back in a few,” said Jason Smith, Mayor of Jackson.

Jackson will still have to cut some communication positions within the administration and are not rehiring a part-time ombudsman and Department of Public Works employee set to retire.

On a side note -the city manager is going to ask council later in June to approve a grant extension to keep nine firefighters in uniform as their grant is set to expire in August.
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