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Published: Thursday, 12/14/2006

Defiance reverses vote on health care

DEFIANCE - In a fight over whether taxpayers should continue providing health insurance for their city councilmen, Defiance City Council this week reversed its decision from last week.

Council voted 5-2 on Tuesday to allow city councilmen to buy health insurance for themselves and their families through the city plan - but at full cost without any taxpayer subsidy.

Ellen Upp and Steve Hubbard, both of whom have spoken out for the idea that the job of a councilmen should pay more than the $4,500 annual salary and retirement benefits, voted against that plan.

Last week, council voted 5-2 to add a $78,000 line item for its health insurance into the city's more than $38 million budget for next year.

That would have allowed councilmen to pay 10 percent of the cost of health insurance through the city, with taxpayers covering the other 90 percent. In that vote, Howard Tropepe and Joe Eureste cast the two no votes on the seven-member council.

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