Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Non-union Hernando school employees get raises

BROOKSVILLE — With a slightly more robust budget than projected, Hernando County School Board members voted 5-0 to approve nearly $200,000 in raises for the 268 district employees not represented by unions.

The Tuesday night vote brings the employees, ranging from cafeteria workers to high-level district staffers, in line this year with the increases built into contracts with union employees. The raises — averaging several hundred dollars a year for each employee — are retroactive to July 2.

"I think that's a very courageous situation," superintendent Bryan Blavatt said after three separate votes to approve the increases. "I think it's a real tribute to the board that you guys recognize that we're cutting it close and that we have the ability."

The final 2012-13 budget, approved Tuesday, includes roughly $5.5 million in reserves, about 3.82 percent of the general fund revenues. The pay increases were already factored into the budget.

Blavatt applauded the board's efforts to equalize pay increases for union and non-union employees.

"The bottom line is that, for us, for all of us, we really want to do what we can for our employees," he said. "When we have the opportunity to do it, we're going to do it. In this case, based on what we're seeing in the budget, we're going to have that capability. I think it's fair."

Board member Matt Foreman, who said he often does not support discretionary raises, voiced his qualms with the step increases — based on years of service — but decided to back them anyway.

"People feel underappreciated, and a lot of folks are, quite frankly, scared for their jobs," he said. "I recognize the value that our employees bring."

"We did have the money to provide this," he added.

With that said, he ended discussion about the raises with a big caveat.

"It's not something folks should be relying on to happen every year because county government does not have the revenue sources that it used to," Foreman said.

None of the other School Board members spoke about the raises.

Before the vote, Frances Thomas, an assistant manager of food and nutrition services at Chocachatti Elementary School, read a letter to the board on behalf of food and nutrition employees.

"As management in the school cafeteria, we have not received a raise in the past three years," Thomas read. "Beginning last year, 3 percent began being taken out of our paychecks each period for Florida retirement. In addition, two paid days have been taken away. … Additionally, there are instances where non-instructional employees make more money than management. As a result, there is no incentive for these people to apply for the management positions."

In January, the School Board voted against a half-step increase for the non-union employees. It created a disparity among the district's roughly 2,900 full-time employees.

The roughly 1,680 members of the Hernando Classroom Teachers Association got a half-step increase last school year. Roughly 1,100 non-instructional employees represented by the Hernando United School Workers got a full-step increase.

The three categories of non-union employees include confidential employees, administrative employees and those considered professional, technical and supervisory.

Confidential employees, including secretaries and bookkeepers, will receive an average raise of $579 this year. Administrative employees will see about $744 in additional money. Professional, technical and supervisory employees will each receive about $807.

Danny Valentine can be reached at or (352) 848-1432.

>> Fast facts

In other business

The Hernando County School Board on Tuesday:

• Voted 5-0 to approve a five-year charter for the Brooksville Engineering, Science & Technology Academy, which will become Brooksville's first charter school. It will join the two Spring Hill campuses of Gulf Coast Academy of Science and Technology as the only charter schools in the county.

• Requested a joint workshop with the County Commission before coming to a consensus on the current moratorium on impact fees in Hernando County. Impact fees are paid on new construction to offset the cost of capital improvements to meet growth demands. During Tuesday afternoon's workshop, the School Board was told the district has lost a little more than $1 million in impact fee collections. The School Board asked superintendent Bryan Blavatt to organize the joint meeting.

Non-union Hernando school employees get raises 09/19/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 8:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. University student accused of making bomb threat on Snapchat


    DELAND — A Florida university student is accused of making threats on Snapchat to "bomb" or "gas" the campus.

    Stetson University freshman Griffin Powell, 18, is accused of making threats on Snapchat to "bomb" or "gas" the campus in DeLand.

  2. Tiki Barber will join his brother, Ronde, on Fox broadcast for Bucs-Giants


    FOX announced Monday night that former Bucs cornerback Ronde Barber will have a familiar face joining him as a guest analyst for the Oct. 1 Bucs-Giants game in Tampa: his twin brother Tiki, who will join …

    Tiki Barber, right, will join his brother, Ronde, left, as a guest analyst on the Oct. 1 Bucs-Giants broadcast on FOX. [Times files (2006)]
  3. Cannons will fire again when Bucs return to Raymond James Stadium


    As good as the Bucs looked in their season-opening 29-7 win against the Bears on Sunday, fans couldn't help but notice that the success didn't sound the same at Raymond James Stadium.

     Ron Gutschmidt is perched on top of the Buccaneer pirate ship ready to activate the ship's cannons with the press of a button after a Buccaneer touchdown. [LUIS SANTANA | Times]
  4. Rick and Tom podcast: How should Joe Maddon be remembered tonight?

    The Heater

    Rick Stroud and Tom Jones talk about Joe Maddon's return to Tropicana Field for the first time since he left the Rays in 2014 in the latest edition of our Rick and Tom podcast. They discuss the mixed emotions …

    Joe Maddon returns to Tropicana Field tonight for the first time since he left the Rays in 2014. [Getty Images]
  5. Watch live: President Trump's speech to the U.N. General Assembly


    UNITED NATIONS — U.S. President Donald Trump and French leader Emmanuel Macron are expected to take the spotlight at the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations — but it's the tough global challenges from the nuclear threat in North Korea and the plight of Myanmar's minority Muslims to the …

    President Donald Trump shakes hands with French President Emmanuel Macron during a meeting at the Palace Hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Monday, Sept. 18, 2017, in New York. [Associated Press]