Better late than never, Pasco set to begin contract talks
In past years, Pasco's teachers and other noninstructional workers sat with district representatives in the spring to negotiate the terms of their employment.
With budgets tight and revenue estimates coming in late (not to mention constantly changing), the conversations are getting a late start this year. But they are about to begin.
The noninstructional team, led by United School Employees of Pasco president Lynne Webb, will meet with the district team headed by employee relations supervisor Bryan Jack starting Wednesday. They'll then get together twice a week afterward.
The teacher team, led by USEP negotiator Jim Ciadella, will sit Thursday with the district team led this year by employee relations supervisor Kevin Shibley (as director Terry Rhum eases his way toward retirement). They'll also gather twice a week after that until a deal is done.
Webb told the School Board recently that she understood the late start, and the attention that invariably will be paid to pay and benefits. Raises have been in short supply for a couple of years after all. But she reminded them that negotiations are as much about working conditions, procedures and policies. Webb didn't give hints as to which ones she plans to bring up, so we'll all watch together.
Meanwhile, any guesses on when the contract will be complete? Remember, last year talks didn't end until right before winter break.