Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Teachers, Administrators, to See Salary Cuts

Based on the actions by the teachers unions a couple of months back, this little piece of news is not going to sit well.  In a way, I can understand where they are coming from. No one likes to receive a pay cut, especially when you are performing your job in a proper manner. But these are hard times all over. The Washington State Legislature has been trying for several months to close a $5B+ budget shortfall. In their efforts to get a budget put together, many services have been cut and fees have been raised.

In my local area, one of the school districts is already planning on laying off some teachers. The district that serves my town did not have to lay off any teachers, but it was real close. In fact, one of my regular readers has lost their teaching job, although I do not know what district in which they teach (and I am not going to ask).

Along with the teacher’s salary cut (1.9%), the school administrators will also see 3% cut, so at least the pain is spread around.  The legislature also had to make significant cuts to medical and other health and social services for the lower income brackets.

The state of Washington has traditionally been a democrat state, especially after the influx of Californians in the 70s and 80s. Republicans haven’t had a majority in many years.  This has created a scene where the democrats have free-wheeled the budget and now we are paying the price. But, due to the dire budgetary circumstances, democrats were practically forced to work with Republicans to get this deal done.

Although the budget was draining to write, legislative leaders heaped praise on each other for bipartisan cooperation. For the first time anybody can recall, Senate democrats jointly worked on the budget with majority Republicans.

“We all sat together through thick and thin and actually worked out our differences when we had them and ultimately ended up making decisions together,” said Sen. Joe Zarelli of Ridgefield, the ranking Republican on the Senate Ways and Means Committee. (Source: Seattle Times)

The linked story goes on to point out that cooperation was a must since several Republicans insisted on a bipartisan effort to get the budget deal done. What the story fails to mention is the mood of the folks. Washingtonians are not fans of tax hikes. We have shot several down over the years. Last year there was an attempt to institute an income tax on the “wealthy”. Even in a democrat controlled state where class warfare does happen, this income tax was rejected overwhelmingly. The state Legislature has tried to raise taxes, but their hands are tied due to referendums passed by voters saying it takes a two-thirds majority to raise taxes. About the only tax passed and kept was the state tax on gas, which was incrementally increased. Getting back on point, raising taxes was not going to happen since the democrats don’t have enough votes and Republicans are in no mood to see taxes increase (not if they want to keep their jobs). So this painful compromise was finally reached.  It now must be approved by both champers and signed by Gov. Gregoire.


  1. Is it me? It is getting ugly in my district Right now, I have my sights set on a position at a Christian school, which will be a commute, but I won't have to deal with the state budget. I am not currently in the union, so no worries there. And it will be Christian! With expectations! What a concept. And lots of parental support. I am praying fervently. A RIF is no fun, and I don't want to deal with the politics. I am ready to move on.

  2. Rose, i don't know if you read my resposnes to your comments but I think your blogsite has been hijacked. I tried getting into your site but advertising pops up and I can't navigate to anything on your page.

  3. Rob,

    I started that blog, but I think you're the only person to try to view it.LOL! Thank you! I will get on and see what's wrong. I don't know if it is something anyone is even interested in, but my husband encouraged me. Where can I read your comments if they are posted other than here?

  4. You're right, all kinds of websites pop up. Not sure what happened or how to fix it. I will have to start from scratch. And no, I didn't see any comments.

  5. Rose, This is where I put them. I just wanted to know if you ever came back to see if you comment got posted. Obviously you do so. I'd check with "Blogger" to see if somehow some kind of html code got inserted that is causing this. Did you "monetize" your page through Blogger?

  6. No I did not monetize, I don't know how to do all that stuff. I don't even know how you get your blog known and read by people unless it is your friends.

    I have an app in for a teaching job at a Christian school, keep your fingers crossed for me.