photo courtesy of the REA
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, the Ridgewood Education Association put out a short statement on their Facebook page saying they were, “Puzzled today by the BOE statement regarding negotiations. The settlement structure that was agreed upon was one proposed by the REA. Does the Board believe that the REA doesn’t understand their own proposal?”
November 6th…The BOE Negotiations Committee has issued the following statement:
The Ridgewood Board of Education (BOE) and the Ridgewood Education Association’s (REA) negotiating teams signed a Memorandum of Agreement on October 9, 2018. That agreement states that “Salary distribution and salary guide construction shall be mutually arrived at by the parties and are subject to Board approval.”
As in all negotiations, the salary guides deserve a diligent review, as they are the mechanism for paying our teachers and secretaries, whose base annual salaries total nearly $45 million.
The Board believes that the salary guide developed by the REA is inconsistent with the mutually agreed upon Memorandum of Agreement signed by the negotiating teams of both parties.
The financial impact of the difference is less than 0.2%, (two-tenths of one percent) over the three-year life of the contract. *
The BOE intends to honor the agreement signed on October 9 as we understand it and urges the REA to do so as well.
The BOE stands ready to work to resolve any outstanding issues with the REA.
As always, the teachers will continue to receive all salaries and benefits in accordance with the previous contract during negotiations.
Vincent Loncto and Jennie Smith Wilson
BOE Negotiating Team
*The difference amounts to $288 thousand out of a total of $146 million in salaries over the life of the contract.
November 5th …REA , “Last week we were notified by the Board of Education that they are no longer in agreement with the contract settlement negotiated with the assistance of a state appointed mediator on Oct. 9. The issue pertains to the new salary guides that by agreement must be agreed upon by both parties. We submitted guide proposals to the Board on Oct. 10 and they waited almost three weeks to tell us they found them unacceptable and that they have a misunderstanding as to what the settlement actually means. Upon first learning this on Oct. 30 we informed the Board how we interpret the settlement and met again with the Board’s negotiating team on Friday to reiterate that point. Tonight the Board has indicated they need even more time to approve the settlement. We find this unacceptable and as such we find ourselves back at an impasse and potentially back at the negotiating table. Ridgewood’s teachers and secretaries have now been working for 128 days under an expired contract. Email Board President Vince Loncto at [email protected] and tell him to honor the agreement and settle now! ”