The East Ridge Municipal elections are rapidly approaching. Unfortunately, it has become the norm in politics to demonize candidates without remorse for them or their families
Jim Bethune has by some been categorized as an used car salesman. When in reality, he had over a 40-year career in the auto industry with the majority of that time serving as a general manager with over 100 employees under his care. This is a far cry from the label used car salesman and shows a commitment and success to his career
Health insurance for life? Let’s explore this more. Back in 2012 while serving as Vice Mayor for the City of East Ridge, Jim was approached by another Councilman with the idea to create an incentive that would allow senior employees to retire and eliminate several high dollar salaries in the process. This was researched by then City Manager Tim Gobble and found to be an enormous cost reduction for the city.
You have to understand, if you work for the City and reach a 25-year tenure anyone can retire and get their health insurance paid in full to the age of 65. The two employees that reached out to the mayor and council both had tenure. Their age put them in or near the qualifications for Medicare. This cost saving measure was then brought before the Mayor and City Council and voted on unanimously to approve. The kicker was that the two employees that took the incentive had a combined salary of nearly $150,000.00 a year. Think about it, they have been retired for 6 years, had they not, their combined salaries with annual raises would now have cost $1,000,000.00 to date. But as it is, the city has only spent around $45,000.00 for their supplemental policies. I call this great management and a win for the city and tax payers and approved by the Mayor and Council not any one person.
Let’s look at Border Regions. Jim Bethune was involved and voted to support this effort for the growth of the city. The economic impact for our future will show this as a success and windfall for years to come.
Jim has been active in the community on many levels. He’s coached ball, been involved with community projects and local organizations. I have seen him many times take money from his own pocket to ensure success in children’s activities. He has always demonstrated a deep compassion for his fellow man
Jim is a Vietnam Vet, a man of strong morals and faith. Married to his wife Wilma for over 50-years. He knows business and I have never seen him negatively campaigning on any individual. If given the chance, I believe he will make East Ridge proud and I know he will represent all the citizens. Please join me and my family in support of Jim Bethune for Mayor on Nov 06.
_ John Tilley