Public safety referendum passed, MFD and MPD celebrates restoration of benefits

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Firefighters and police officers are celebrating the passage of the public safety referendum.

Police and fire unions told FOX13 this tax increase would be used to restore benefits lost for some of its members.

Those benefits were cut in 2014.

The unions want to restore health care benefits and pensions for hundreds of their fellow Memphians in blue and red.

How will they do it?

By asking voters to up the sales tax in the city by half-a-percent from 2.25% to 2.75%.

Now, the men and women of MFD and MPD are overjoyed that their benefits and pensions are restored to what they were in 2014.

We got the chance to speak to the heads of the Memphis police association. They said the voters of Memphis have spoken, and they support first responders.

They also said it’s difficult to retain good cops and firefighters when they come to Memphis then find out they can get better benefits somewhere else.

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Chief John Covington with MPD told FOX13, “I should say something about morale. We never doubted the faith and the love of the citizens. It is shared back to them. Tonight, I believe is a validation of that.

We have the support of the citizens. If we build on that, the same way we did with this, we can achieve great things in the city.”