Jersey City Council President Lavarro to introduce measures to end health benefits for commissioners of autonomous boards
Jul 26, 2013 | 2929 views | 0 0 comments | 33 33 recommendations | email to a friend | print
City Council President Rolando Lavarro Jr. (right) with Deputy City Clerk Sean Gallagher.
City Council President Rolando Lavarro Jr. (right) with Deputy City Clerk Sean Gallagher.
JERSEY CITY – City Council President Rolando Lavarro Jr. will introduce an ordinance at the Wednesday, July 31 Jersey CityCity Council meeting to end health benefits for volunteer commissioners of the Jersey City Municipal Utilities Authority (MUA) Board.

MUA Board members get full health benefits from the city, despite working only one hour per week. Commissioners who volunteer for the Jersey City Incinerator Authority (JCIA) Board also receive city health benefits.

“This ordinance is something I fought for while on the City Council, but was blocked more than once by allies of [former Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy] who wanted to protect their friends and family members in these appointed positions,” said Mayor Steven Fulop. “I am ecstatic that Council President Lavarro is closing the loop here.”

In 2010, then-Councilman Fulop was successful in enacting changes that now require MUA and JCIA commissioners to contribute 20 percent to the cost of their health benefits. Changes to the law also prohibit new commissioners from receiving benefits.

“The two ordinances we are introducing Wednesday night will officially codify the abolishment of health benefits for these two boards,” said Council President Lavarro. “This is what the public wants and this action is long overdue in changing the culture of city government. This is an important step in restoring public confidence in city government.”

The measures are likely to pass a vote by the City Council.

Mayor Fulop and Council President Lavarro have also pledged to fill board vacancies with more members of the community.

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