Unadilla Valley's budget woes continue

NEW BERLIN – The Unadilla Valley School District announced this week that two of the three unions currently representing employees were willing to reopen their current contracts to negotiate concessions in light of this year’s budget challenges.

Superintendent Robert Mackey called on local unions to re-negotiate with the district, asking that they consider forgoing their annual raises or other benefits in a bid to reduce cutbacks.

The school started its budget process looking at the worst-case scenario, announcing the potential loss of 24 positions.

“The Administrator’s Union and the Support Staff’s Union, the CSEA, have told us they are willing to enter negotiations. The Unadilla Valley Teachers Union has told us they are not considering reopening their contract at this time,” said Mackey.

Mackey said no agreement had yet been reached between the groups, but he’s optimistic about their willingness to cooperate.

Currently the administrator’s union has six members with two positions on the chopping block; one of those will be leaving due to attrition and one will be laid-off. The support staff has 74 union members in the district and is looking at six layoffs. The 101 certified teachers and licensed teacher assistants are looking at a possible loss of 15 positions; only two of those will be through retirement or other natural attrition – the rest will be laid-off. Mackey said the current contract would provide a 4 percent raise to teachers in the coming school year.

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