Pay hike of 1 percent eyed for Mehlville classified staff

Stronger-than-projected financial position also means pay hike for district’s teachers.

By EVAN YOUNG

The Mehlville Board of Education is scheduled this week to consider granting a 1-percent salary increase to district classified staff.

Board members will consider the increase when they meet at 7 p.m. today — July 28 — at the Administration Building, 3120 Lemay Ferry Road.

The increase will be added to the 2011-2012 salary schedules for classified employees, who are paid hourly.

It will cost the district $120,000 plus $15,000 in payroll taxes and benefits, according to Chief Financial Officer Noel Knobloch.

“The operating results for the past year (2010-2011) were better than projected due to an unanticipated increase in revenue and savings which resulted from cost controls which were implemented during the year,” Knobloch wrote in a recommendation to the board.

Knobloch specifically has attributed the increase in revenue to a $392,000 state formula payment that was supposed to come in 2009-2010 because of an increase in the district’s English Language Learner enrollment.

In addition, the district will get a higher-than-expected $230,000 in state sales-tax revenue, he has said.

On the expense side, the school district was able to save more than $700,000 in salaries and benefits due mainly to open positions; $353,000 on purchased services; $194,000 in supplies and $164,000 in capital costs, Knobloch has said.

The district’s stronger-than-projected financial position for fiscal 2011, which ended June 30, also will mean a pay increase for district teachers in 2011-2012 as required by a memorandum of understanding between the board and the Mehlville National Education Association. Officials have said end-of-year balances will exceed projections by at least $500,000, the threshold that triggers a revenue sharing provision in the MOU, which states half the excess funds above that amount will be put toward teachers’ salaries.

The exact amount of the certified adjustment will be finalized next month, though board President Venki Palamand has projected it also will be roughly 1 percent.

Mehlville’s 2011-2012 budget was prepared with only salary channel changes in mind as certified and classified personnel salary steps were frozen at 2010-2011 levels.

Both classified and certified employees will remain on their current salary step, but the amount of that step will increase.

In the certified salary schedule, channels denote a teacher’s level of education. Each channel also includes steps that represent each year a teacher has worked. Step increases are given to classified personnel based on satisfactory job performance.