Sarasota News Leader

09/13/2103

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Sarasota News Leader September 13, 2013 Page 78 SCHOOL BOARD REACHES CONTRACT AGREEMENT WITH UNION The negotiating teams for the Sarasota County School Board and the Sarasota Classified/ Teachers Association reached an agreement Wednesday afternoon, Sept. 11, on a contract for the 2013-14 school year, the school district has announced. gaining unit employees to receive a 3.25-percent raise," the release continues. "The parties agreed that, in the event the Legislature does not continue the special salary appropriation, the salary schedules will be reduced by 3.25 percent in the future." "The agreement provides that all bargaining unit employees, including teachers and support staff such as classroom aides, bus drivers and cafeteria workers, will receive a 3.25-percent raise for the 2013-14 school year," a news release says. "It is the first across-the-board increase in the salary schedules in five years." The parties also agreed to restore life insurance coverage for employees to the level of $50,000; it had been reduced to $25,000. The increase was negotiated with a new insurance provider at no additional cost to the School Board, the release points out. That increase will be funded primarily by $6.3 million that the Florida Legislature mandated for the specific purpose of employee raises, the release notes. "The School Board will add $1.5 million to that amount to allow all bar- The final agreement must be approved by the School Board and ratified by the employees before it can take effect. It is anticipated the approvals will occur in mid-October, the release adds. All salary increases will be retroactive to July 1. Sarasota County Schools Deputy Chief Financial Officer Al Weidner (right) discusses the budget with the School Board earlier this year. Photo by Scott Proffitt

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