Dublin Villager

Dublin school board

Support association to forgo base salary increase for 2013-14

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The Dublin Support Association will forgo raises to their base salary for the 2013-14 school year.

The Dublin Board of Education this week approved the extension of the contract with the Dublin Support Association that includes custodians, maintenance and grounds staff.

The contract will be extended for about 120 district employees represented by the Dublin Support Association as is, but with no raise to base salary.

"We appreciate the leadership in getting this done," Superintendent David Axner said.

The district had budgeted no raise for support staff for the 2013-14 school year, Treasurer Stephen Osborne said.

"It was based on the current economic conditions," he said, noting that it could have changed during negotiations.

The move by the Dublin Support Association follows that of other Dublin City School's staff.

The Dublin Education Association, administrative and technical staff also voted to extend their contracts for one year with no increase to base salary.

Step increases to pay will still occur, though.

"We've come full circle," Axner said, of all staff extending contracts with no increase to base salary.

The contract extensions across the district come before Issue 48 on the Nov. 6 ballot.

Dublin City Schools will ask voters to approve a combined 6.4-mill operating levy and $15.87-million bond issue next month.

If approved by voters, the tax issue would cost home owners an additional $213 per $100,000 assessed home value annually.

Staff also gave back raises last year before voters rejected a combined 7.2-mill operating levy and $25-million bond issue.

The Dublin Support Association gave back part of its scheduled 1.25-percent raise and the Dublin Education Association gave back 66 percent of all scheduled pay increases for the 2011-12 fiscal year. Administration also decided not to take a 1.25-percent raise slated for the 2012-13 fiscal year.

Other matters

In other district news, board members this week approved the refinancing of about $13.3 million in bonds.

According to Osborne, when the district issued the bonds in 2005, they received a 5 percent interest rate. By refinancing the bonds now, the district will receive a lower interest rate of 2 percent.

The district can get such a low interest rate, Osborne said, because it has the highest, AAA credit rating, which was recently reaffirmed by Moody's and Standard and Poor's.

"We're able to issue debt at a lower rate," he said. "That saves money for everyone in the district."

Although the district is seeking a ballot issue next month, Osborne said the plan to cut $10 million from the budget if Issue 48 fails helped retain the high credit score.

If Issue 48 is rejected by voters, Osborne said the district's credit rating could fall.

"Voter support is very important," he said.

During the Oct. 8 board meeting, Pinney Elementary School special education secretary Sue Blakley and Wright Elementary School reading support teacher Josie Stewart were given Golden Shamrock Awards.

The honor recognizes district staff who go above and beyond expectations to help students and staff.

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