Today I urge your support of extending city benefits to same-sex partners. I would also like to commend the Commission as a whole for your sober, careful, and respectful approach to this issue.
Your staff’s thorough analysis indicates that there is virtually no fiscal or administrative burden associated with this policy. It simply allows a few city employees a level of family security approaching their peers. That’s a successful conservative policy, one that strengthens families and makes for better employees.
It is disappointing that a candidate for the Senate seat I will be vacating, who does not even live in Lakeland, has sought to politicize this issue and divide Lakelanders for his own selfish gain. There is no reason for it. Voters are tired of the divisiveness and the injecting of social personal agendas into what should be a thoughtful business decision. Trusted and valued employees should be treated equally with respect and dignity if we want to attract and retain them.
Supporting a policy of fairness in the benefits packages of all City employees is in line with what many others cities are doing. It does not reflect a personal opinion toward same-sex partners as Mr. Myers would have you believe, but rather an acknowledgement that all employees should be treated equally.
I trust you will do the right thing and not be bullied or swayed by self-serving political rhetoric.
State Senator, District 15