Wage hike could mean 40 jobs cut: Vancouver School Board 0
Up to 40 of Vancouver’s school support staff, custodians, secretaries, teachers and administrators could lose their jobs next year to pay for staff wage increases agreed to by the B.C. government earlier this year.
Vancouver School Board vice-chairman Mike Lombardi said on Tuesday a combined 3.5% wage increase through next year for CUPE BC’s non-educational staff at the city’s schools is causing the board to spend an additional $4.25 million in 2014.
Under the previous budget, the board was already going to be $24 million over its budget next year. This year’s raise — which would have put the board $2.43 million in the red — had to be covered by the district’s surpluses.
“Which will reduce our surplus to nothing. Then we have to have a plan for subsequent years,” Lombardi said.
An estimated 90% of VSB’s budget goes towards staff salaries and employee benefits — which Lombardi says have been increasing each year — by order of agreements signed by Victoria, but it’s civic school boards on the hook for the funds.
“The provincial government increases teacher pension plan contributions. Doesn’t pay for them. They have salary increments built into the salary grid for teachers. They don’t paid for them,” he said.
“We’ve now had a cumulated effect of 10 years of premiums being imposed at the provincial level and they’re not being paid for … it’s accumulated and accumulated and now we’ve added to it.”
The board meets Wednesday to discuss the topic, and a two-month public consultation period is planned for February for input on what services to eliminate.