Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Road to an Override?
So as of this morning both papers have covered the new three-year teacher contract for the Amherst Schools, the second largest employer in Amherst (behind that juggernaut Umass) and both articles do the complicated math, providing average salaries for all 400 teachers or the 14 at the top step but nobody does the simple math:
What is the total dollar amount of increase over last year’s 1% increase for salary/wages due to this blanket 2.5% raise and did the Superintendent factor that dollar amount into his budgets presented to the School Committees and coming before Town Meeting next month?
The combined school budgets are 49 million and colloquial wisdom is that employees account for 85% of that, or around $40 million. So a 2.5% raise comes to an extra $1 million (Hey a million here and a million there…).
My concern of course is NEXT year when it jumps another 3.5% from the NEW higher number, or $1.3 million.
I emailed Superintendent Hochman and longtime Finance Committee member Alice Carlozzi early Monday morning to ask what the dollar amount is and neither of them knew. Not a good sign.
UPDATE: April 11. So I heard back yesterday from Superintendent Hochman and the figures are: $294,701 for last year when the raises were only 1% and this coming year FY09 694,947 and next year at the 3.5% will top $1 million.