Byron district, teachers reach new deal

BYRON – The Byron Community Unit School District (CUSD) 226 Board of Education and the Byron Education Association jointly announced the reaching of the ratification of the Collective Bargaining Agreement for school years 2016-17 through 2018-19.
In a statement, the district recognized the efforts of the individual negotiators for reaching an agreement that is, “fair and beneficial to the teachers and taxpayers of the Byron CUSD 226.”
Dr. James Hammack, district superintendent, said there would be teacher increases over three years. Over that period, the pay of teachers would increase between $7,500 to $10,000.
But one board member, Steve Bouton, was against the deal. In a statement, he said it will put the district into deficit spending within four years and lead to teacher layoffs.
"I believe every member of this Board and the BEA care about the children of this community; I respect this Board and the BEA for the work we are doing," he said in the statement. "However, I believe this contract is unfair to teachers, staff, students and families, and taxpayers: I believe all of them will be negatively affected by the financial impact of this proposed contract.
"What is being proposed tonight is a contract the District cannot afford."
He said the total cost to taxpayers will be $800,000.
Hammack could not be reached for comment on the numbers.
The district said the negotiators of the deal who need to be recognized are: Ed Clift, Board of Education negotiator; Phil Kesler, Board of Education negotiator; Dr. James Hammack, Byron CUSD 226 superintendent; Richard Petesch, Byron CUSD 226 legal counsel, Whitt Law, LLC.; Christian Kerr, Byron CUSD 226 director of fiscal services; Robert Baker, Byron Education Association chief negotiator; Derrick Palmer, Byron Education Association negotiator; Dale Hartman, Byron Education Association negotiator; and Susan Goudreau, Illinois Education Association, Uniserv director, Region 20.1.    

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