First, the good: We won!
Earlier today, the County Commission voted 8-5 to return the 5% to county workers. Every commissioner who voted for us last time stood with us again.
A special thanks goes to Commissioner Barbara Jordan, who made the motion and the strongest case for keeping the county’s promise to its employees.
The bad news: eight isn’t enough to be veto proof.
After the vote Mayor Gimenez told the media that he would certainly veto the vote. Again.
But, having lost his 5% argument three times now, the pressure is on Gimenez to come up with a viable option that the entire Commission (or at least nine of them) can live with.
As frustrating as this seemingly endless process has been, there are several reasons to be proud of what we have accomplished so far.
For one, the unity shown by all county workers in standing together has been inspiring and has increased our political strength.
At today’s hearing, the activism of members from Jackson was noted over and over again, particularly by those Commissioners who were clearly embarrassed to have received flip-flops in the mail from some members upset by their lack of leadership.
President Martha Baker, RN, also reminded Commissioners that the 5% issue is having a direct, negative effect on the personnel at Jackson, as experienced staff leave to seek better pay and conditions elsewhere.
The take away is to stay strong and unified in this fight.
Even if we’re tired of the déjà vu.