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Workers to get "holiday' check

Five thousand employees of the Pasco school system got some good pre-holiday news Tuesday night.

Although new contracts have yet to be ratified by the union or approved by the School Board, John Long, administrative assistant to the superintendent, said he has ordered the finance department to "do whatever it takes" so checks for the amount of the pay raises, retroactive to July 1, will arrive in employees' mailboxes in time for Christmas.

Under the tentative contracts, instructional workers are to receive an average 3.83 percent raise while non-instructional workers, which includes bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodians and others not directly involved in teaching children, will receive average 4.56 percent raises.

The contracts are expected to be ratified by the union within a couple of weeks and approved by the School Board in November.