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North Union approves 3.6 percent wage hike

By Staff | Jun 13, 2014

The North Union Board of Education Monday night approved a 3.6 percent package increase which, with TSS (Teacher Salary Supplement) money, brings starting teachers’ salaries to $31,587.

The increase includes a $215 increase in both Schedule A and B, the latter which sets the base rate for coaching and activity director salaries. The district is also increasing insurance by $30 a month for $586 for its monthly contribution. Employees are also getting dental insurance and $10,000 in additional life insurance coverage. Employees will get one extra personal day each year and be able to carry over to three personal days.

The total additional cost of the package to the district is $81,403.

Board member George Walker questioned the three personal days.

“There was a lot of give and take,” explained superintendent Matt Berninghaus.

“I think we get a lot more out of it by giving that,” said board president Jim Boyer.

In other business, the board accepted the resignation of Andrew Robinson as high-school vocal director. Berninghaus said Robinson is relocating.

The board approved hiring Kelly Chizek as assistant volleyball coach. Chizek was hired as math instructor at the May board meeting.

The board also approved hiring Lydia Fothergill, business instructor, as high-school student council advisor.

After considerable discussion, the board approved appointing Dacken & Associates Insurance of Bancroft as the district insurance agent of record.

Jerry Black of Great Lakes Insurance and Dacken both expressed an interest in handling the district’s insurance. Dacken resigned his position as North Union board member in May.

Black said it did not matter to him whether he or Dacken were named, noting that the commission would be split four ways with two other area agents, Ron Wilson and Phil Henriksen.

Dacken said that since he had been agent for the Sentral School District for 28 years he would like to continue as agent, adding that he had a good relationship with the underwriter.

Boyer moved and Jen Von Bank seconded naming Black district agent. However, board member Cory Culbertson said the board should consider the number of years Dacken has served as agent. “I feel we should appoint Ron to the position,” he said.

After board member George Walker said he would be willing to go with either agent, Black suggested Dacken be named agent of record. “To me it makes sense. That’s the right thing to do,” Black said.

Boyer and Von Bank withdrew their motions and Boyer made another motion to name Dacken, which the board approved.