Chicago firefighters nixes mayor's motion on disability pay, gun stocks
Some officials say the disapproving vote came about because of opposition to the mayor's demands for firefighter concessions
By EMS1 Staff
CHICAGO — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has been denied by the firefighters pension fund on two motions he made.
While meeting with the Chicago Firefighters Annuity and Benefits Fund, Mayor Emanuel made a motion to divest $173,000 in Smith & Wesson stock and another motion to ride herd over the 390 firefighters and paramedics who together collect $27 million a year in taxpayer-funded duty disability pay.
Both of Mayor Emanuel's measures failed, 5-2 on the guns issue and 4-3 on the disability reform, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
The decisions sent City Comptroller Amer Ahmad storming out of the meeting, but he refused to speak on the subject.
Ahmad's spokeswoman told the newspaper in a statement that Mayor Emanuel is still committed to "standing up against gun companies that stand in the way of commonsense reform and will continue [to] seek out necessary reforms that protect taxpayer dollars from fraud and abuse in the disability program,”
The statement went on to say "While we are disturbed by the fire pension fund’s decision, we are more so encouraged by the those funds — including laborers, police, municipal, and teachers — that have chosen to stand with us against these gun companies.”
An anonymous source told the Sun-Times that the disapprovals were spurred by Mayor Emanuel's demand for contract and pension fund concessions from firefighters.
After the Newtown shooting, Mayor Emanuel has made strong strides in stricter gun control and banning assault weapons and urged firefighters to take a jab at gun manufacturers by dropping their weapons stock.
The Chicago Public School teachers fund approved Mayor Emanuel's measure and dumped their stock with three assault weapon manufacturers.