The Waterford School District’s employee unions have ratified their contracts set to take effect on July 1.
The unions include the Waterford Education Association (WEA) and three Michigan Educational Support Professional Association (MESPA) units — one for secretaries, another for instructional aides and library technicians, and the third for custodians and cafeteria, maintenance and transportation workers.
Bill Holbrook, the district’s director of finance and budget, said that all employees were scheduled for a two-percent wage increase this year but will forego it.
All district employees will also be contributing to their health care in the form of $30 per pay period for single coverage, $60 for two people, and $90 for a family.
“We’re very pleased. This gets us to our balanced budget and saving programs for kids,” Holbrook said.
The teachers’ contracts will expire at the end of next August while the other unions’ contracts will expire at the end of next June.
The Waterford School Board adopted the district’s 2011-12 budget at its meeting on Thursday, June 16, with no changes from what was originally proposed.
The district was projecting a budget shortfall of $12.7 million, which will be offset by concessions and the use of money from the district’s fund balance.
“We are extremely grateful to our employees for their willingness to make personal sacrifices for the greater good of our students and our organization,” said John Silveri, Waterford School District Superintendent.
“We’re also thankful for the hundreds of constructive suggestions for reductions and enhancements to the district budget that were submitted by employees and community members at our invitation. Without these vital contributions, we would not have been able to fundamentally hold students harmless.”
Marcy Felegy, Michigan Education Association (MEA) Waterford Executive Director said that the last few years have been a financial strain for all of her members.