LIMA — The Lima school board approved a new two-year labor agreement with the teachers union Thursday night.
The contract, covering members of the Lima Education Association, would run from July 1, 2018, through June 30, 2020.
The agreement calls for an increase on the teacher’s base salary plus 2 percent the first year and an additional 2 percent increase the second year.
“Overall the membership is pleased that we have all this finished. They feel satisfied that we worked together, both sides of the negotiations and came up with what we believe is a fair deal,” said Karen Young, negotiations chairwoman for the LEA.
“They’re very deserving of the increases they’re going to receive and if we could give them more, we would. They work very, very hard. They’re some of the hardest-working teachers around. They’re some of the most highly trained teachers around. Other districts come in here and take our teachers for their districts,” said Jill Ackerman, superintendent of Lima schools.
In other business, the school board also approved its five-year operating plan.
The plan is revised in May and October and gives the school district an idea how they’re doing financially.
“According to our October forecast, we are on target to where we projected when we adopted the forecast in October. Normally in May the board votes to do any adjustments to make it a true picture of your revenues and expenditures and right now our expenses and revenues are within one percent of the forecast we adopted in October,” said Shelly Reiff, Lima schools treasurer.
Reiff makes sure the school board knows where they are financially.
“I keep everybody up to date every month where we are compared to the five-year forecast and everybody has stuck to their budget and we haven’t had any unexpected overruns.”
But over the next five years, voters will have to consider a tax renewal levy.
“We do have a renewal coming up. It would be like four years from now, but at the current time, as long as the state budget is the same as it has been, and the state has been very friendly to urban schools, as long as that continues we’ll be fine,” said Reiff.
“There’s two unknown budgets in the forecast so there’s basically just depending on past information so if that would change then our forecast would greatly change so that’s an unknown we would have to live with because we are 85 percent state funded so most of our funding comes from the State of Ohio,” Reiff added.
Prior to the board meeting, teachers and staffers were honored for their years of service to Lima schools.
Recognized for 30 years of service were Jill Ackerman, Teresa Wilson, Pamela Sinica, Jackie Blosser and Brian Wischmeyer, Joyce Fell, Paula Kelly, Colleen Rex and Isagani Yumul.
Kirsten Anderson and Julia Neu were recognized for 35 years of service. They were not able to attend the ceremony.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.