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This small town of about 7,000 residents pays $2 million a year for town employees and their families. This insurance has gone up 67 percent from 2001 to 2006 and more in 2007.

Reform should be top priority and employees need to pay a larger share toward their benefits. The school unions should be separated from town employees for a number of reasons (that I won’t mention at this time).

Percentages down:

Dispatchers: 70-30.

School union: 80-20.

Non-union: 65-35.

Town employees: 65-35.

Other unions: 70-30.

I don’t know if any town employees pay Social Security or not but the military went seamlessly into Social Security and it was a blessing for all of us, both short-term and retirees.

MARILYN GUICHARD

Ayer