Dallas County OKs Medical Benefits for Domestic Partners
A committee in Dallas County approved to give medical benefits for domestic partners of county employees on Tuesday, Dallas’ WFFA-TV reported.
The Dallas County Commissioners Court approved the decision in a 3-2 vote. The approval will give money for couples who aren’t married, whether they are gay or straight. Dallas County encompasses Dallas and the surrounding suburbs.
"There is simply no place for pernicious partisanship when it comes to equality," Rafel McDonnel of the Resource Center Dallas, a LGBT and HIV/AIDS service organization, told the news station.
As is probably to be expected in the city that gave the world "GCB," not everyone is applauding the committee’s decision.
"This is utterly ridiculous and totally irresponsible position on your part," Debbie Morozzo, a Dallas resident said. "This is a waste of taxpayers’ money."
Morozzo doesn’t believe that Dallas County should give a stipend of up to $295 per year for county workers’ domestic partners. Without the benefit, however, their partners would not be able to receive medical benefits.
The article notes that the three Democrats on the board voted in favor of the benefits while the two Republicans were against it.
"Are we going to fund obese people?," Commissioner Maurine Dickey, a Republican, asked. "Are we going to start funding smokers? Are we going to fund people who have blue Pontiacs?"
Officials say that providing domestic partners with medical benefits will cost the county no more than $100,000 a year.
Currently same-sex couples are not allowed to marry in Texas and the state does not recognize any form of unions for gay and lesbian couples.