By Jacob Mathias
A base wage increase approved by the Stevens Point School Board last week will cost the district about $1.3 million in three years of back wages.
An increase of 1.5 percent will be applied to salaried contracts of Stevens Point Area Education Association members beginning on July 1, 2012 for the 2012-13 school year and beyond. The raise was comes after 3 years of stalled negotiations with the SPAEA- negotiations that ended in a stalemate.
The district approved the raise after a formal impasse in negotiations was declared by the Wisconsin Education Association Council. What issues(s) forced the impasse wasn’t immediately clear.
Florence Haley, school district director of human resources, said the wage increase will apply to regular and part-time certified teaching personnel, guidance counselors, social workers, librarians and speech, physical and occupational therapists.
Tom Owens, director of business services, said the increase amounts to $435,582 per year.
“We take that factor (1.5 percent) and multiply by each individual salary and that would be their increase,” said Owens. “That’s a permanent increase. We have to absorb that going forward in our operating budget.”
“We plan to process the back pay the week of June 22,” said Haley. “Once we process it, they should have it that Friday or Saturday in their account.”
The school district and SPAEA are next entering preliminary negotiations for the 2013-14 school year.
The next regular school board meeting is June 8 at 6:30 PM at the Bliss Educational Services Center.