Self-Interest and Greed - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 2219627

Self-Interest and Greed

The November 23 edition of The Press had an article by Cailin Riley [“Benefits Package Includes Stipend for Some”] and a Letter to the Editor by me [“Plan Exposed”]. Cailin’s article noted a newly adopted “opt out” provision that allows the Southampton Village mayor and trustees to extort an additional $3,500 from village taxpayers if they use health insurance from other sources — including the federal government. This demonstrates this administration’s complete lack of concern for village taxpayers and a complete lack of decency.

My letter notes the deception and unfairness of using an income limit to compute the contribution toward the cost of the benefit. For income, they use only their village compensation — the compensation of a part-time employee. Thus, for family health insurance benefits, which cost $37,070, they will only contribute $1,025. How is this fair to taxpayers?

If they want to use an income limit, they need to include all their outside income. And if they want family coverage, they should include all the income of the family members.

We have a trustee who had full employer-provided health care benefits before she became a trustee. By using the village plan, she is costing village taxpayers $37,000 and probably got an increase in pay from her employer for dropping her employer-provided coverage. Wonder if the employer is complicit in defrauding village taxpayers?

My letter also noted that the raises given to themselves make the mayor’s compensation 35 percent higher than the mayors of East Hampton and Sag Harbor, and make the trustees’ compensation 50 percent higher than trustees in East Hampton and Sag Harbor.

Does the self-interest and greed of this administration have no bounds?

David Rung

Southampton Village