TOOELE, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - An onslaught of angry Tooele County employees convinced Tooele Co. Commissioners to delay a plan that would have cut health benefits for employees who retire with the county.
Tuesday people in Tooele weren't happy with their County Commissioners and they let them hear it.
"It's not right," said an upset Tooele County employee.
"It feels unethical, it feels dishonest," said another upset employee.
"I don't see what you're thinking is to destroy people's lives like this," said a third employee.
The commissioners were planning to eliminate health benefits for county employees who retired after July 1st.
"How does that make you feel?" asked Reporter Brian Carlson.
"Angry, I'm angry," said Ladean Coon, her husband worked 29 years for Tooele Co.
"It's disappointing to me," said Gordon Beals, worked 5 years for Tooele Co.
"Really sad... it's sad that they have to do this, and I don't mean to be emotional, but they're my friends," said Susan Kroff, worked 28 years with Tooele Co.
The commissioners said they understand why people are upset, but they don't have many options.
"We had predicted that we would run out of cash as early as the end of June," said Shawn Milne, Tooele Co. Commissioner.
They said they realized last fall Tooele County was $4 million in debt. So they've made cuts and increased fees, but still have another million and a half to go.
"I hate to impact lives in any way, I hate to change anything, but the reality is we're looking at every avenue we can to save money," said Jerry Hurst, Tooele Co. Commissioner.
Eliminating retirement health benefits would have shaved off an additional $125,000 a year.
"$125,000 is nothing on $2.5 million," said one upset employee.
But after listening to Tuesday's tidal wave of ticked off Tooele employees. Commissioners delayed making the cut.
"Not hearing any motion on resolution 2013-9, we will not take any action at this time," said J. Bruce Clegg, Tooele Co. Commissioner.
"We respect and admire their input and suggestions, and we're going to take them to heart," said Clegg later in an interview.
As you can tell a lot of Tooele employees are happy about the Commissioners decision today. Not everyone thinks it will last, but it gives them hope. Afterwards when I talked to the Commissioners they say they plan to take a second look, get more professional advice, then hold another public meeting when they make a final decision. Their next meeting in scheduled for May 14th.
Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @tv_briancarlson