The Huron Valley Schools Board of Education approved agreements with nine of the district’s bargaining units on Wednesday, June 29 that call for across-the-board reductions in health care benefits, as well as a wage freeze imposed on each group except for early childhood educators.
“Each group was diligent in recognizing that concessions were needed and each was progressive in bargaining,” said Jim Baker, the district’s executive director of human resources. “We appreciate each group’s willingness to come to the table during these touch economic times and work collaboratively for the benefit of our students.”
The early childhood educators’ two-year contract calls for a 2-percent wage reduction during 2012-13 for those hired prior to Aug. 11, 2007.
Each employee will be scheduled two less working days than in 2010-11. A 10-percent increase in employee contributions toward health care premiums and benefit packages will be in place each year.
A four-year agreement for secretarial staff calls for incremental employee health care contribution increases of 5 percent for every year of the contract. The cap on insurance premiums fluctuates throughout the term of the contract.
The paraprofessionals’ bargaining unit ratified a two-year agreement that changes members’ health insurance coverage to a Health Alliance Plan (HAP) HMO plan. Each member will pay a 10-percent contribution toward vision insurance and continue to pay 100 percent of dental insurance. They will be scheduled to work three less days than they did in 2010-11.
District administration ratified a one-year agreement that cuts employee compensation by 6 percent via increases in contributions to health insurance, or a combination of reductions such as car use allowances or cash-in-lieu of health care coverage.
Apart from the wage freeze, the supervisors’ and coordinators’ compensation will be reduced during their two-year agreement by 4.5 percent from 2010-11 in the first year of the contract, and 6.5 percent from 2010-11 the second year — except for two coordinator positions with salaries less than $57,000.
In this case, during the first year of the contract, the reduction is 3.2 percent; in the second year, it’s 5.2 percent. Compensation reductions will be borne by the employees’ contribution to health premiums and health care components.
Foremen, cafeteria managers and technicians’ two-year agreement calls for health care premiums and contributions to rise from 10 percent in the first year of the contract to 15 percent in the second year. Moreover, a 10 percent reduction in cash-in-lieu of health care benefits will be rolled out in the first year; the reduction will be 15 percent in the second year.
The “confidential” administrative assistants’ three-year contract calls for contributions to health insurance packages and premiums to climb each year by 5 percent.
The executive administrative assistant will be contributing 10 percent to health insurance premiums and health care benefits during the one-year agreement.
The continuing education group ratified a two-year agreement that states each employee will receive a comprehensive health care PPO plan. In 2011-12, employees will be required to contribute 10 percent toward premiums and health care packages.
The changes are a direct result of the district’s $9 million deficit after making $7.6 million in reductions and borrowing $2.6 million from its fund balance.