Chairman Emry Chesterfield called the meeting to order at 1:02 pm.
Members present: Charles Blake, Loria Bryant, Emry Chesterfield, Donna Davis, Claude Johnson, Belinda Pearl and Clint Walker. Members absent with notice: Regena English and Brad Montgomery
Claude Johnson moved to accept the December 2, 2015 PPC minutes
Belinda Pearl – 2nd. Motion carried
Old Business - Classified Bonus
Emry Chesterfield introduced Denise Palmer, Chief Financial Officer, PCSSD to the committee. She was invited to give us the cost to the district and a breakdown on how she got to that on $1250, $900 and $500 classified staff bonuses.
Denise Palmer passed out a sheet showing what a bonus would cost based on 1213 classified employees. Bonus of $1250 would cost $1,516,250 then add 22% for FICA, Medicare, retirement and unemployment
$1250 would cost $1,849,825
$900 would cost $1,331,874
$500 would cost $739,930
Emry asked for a list of all classified employees and requested Ms. Palmer come back to our February PPC Meeting. He turned it over to the committee to ask Ms. Palmer questions
Donna Davis asked how much the district could afford to pay the classified employees in a bonus
Denise Palmer stated she didn’t come prepared to make a presentation, but the certified PPC asked if it would be better to have this presented and built into the budget at the 1st of the year. She said absolutely because they are able to look at the budget at the budget and put that in, instead of in the middle of the year when you have all your expenditures set and people are in the middle of spending, especially in December when we are halfway through the fiscal year.
If we didn’t go out and take this out of someone’s budget, like Mr. Blake’s for example and then from here and there.
Looking at it as a whole, we would have to add $1.8 million to expenditures. That would drive the legal fund balance down below the 10% of expenditures. There is a physical plan out there introduced in 2011, Objective 36 that says the district will keep a Legal Fund balance equal to 10% of the annual expenditures. If we aren’t able to pull out of the current budget $1.8 million we would have to add it to the expenditures and that will the legal fund balance down.
Belinda Pearl stated that it would have been on there, if we would have been allowed to put it on the agenda. If they don’t let it come on the agenda then we can’t ask for it.
Emry Chesterfield suggested to the committee before we make any kind of decisions on what we want to do about that can Ms. Palmer brings us the information he requested and that Ms. Davis requested to our next meeting.
Denise Palmer said Mr. Guess asked her to bring to the PPC that he will not support any bonus.
We are in January and we cannot afford that. We have one of two choices, either pull it out of the current expenditures, which means they will have to go to every budget and tell them we are going to increase your salary dollars, but we have to pull it out of your budgets. Or we would have to add it to the expenditures and pull the legal fund balance down.
Donna Davis asked in this budget all of these would bring the legal fund balance down
Denise Palmer said it would
Donna Davis asked if it would go below the 10%
Denise Palmer said it would, if we do not pull it from the current budget. We would have to go to everyone and find money to fund this and take X amount of dollars out of their budget.
Emry Chesterfield stated he understands what Dr Guess said, but would she still bring the information Ms. Davis asked for, in writing so everyone on the committee could get a copy.
Ms. Palmer agreed
Emry Chesterfield asked Ms. Palmer if he was correct that the district should be getting a check this month, if they haven’t already gotten it.
Denise Palmer stated we get checks from several areas and wanted to know more about what he was talking about.
Emry Chesterfield said to run the district
Denise Palmer said absolutely, we receive funding monthly. Foundation funding on our tax assessments and everything. We receive the bulk of that in a check in Nov and May.
Donna Davis stated then at the beginning of the year, you know how much you are going to get in Nov & May
Denise Palmer stated they have a budget set with an estimate not exact
Claude Johnson asked if we had gotten everything in December of last year we would have been able to at least try for a bonus
Denise Palmer stated no, to pay for a bonus we would have to be able to fund that bonus. In order to fund that bonus we would of had to been able to match revenue and expenses. Pull from budgets or drive fund balance down.
Donna Davis asked how much the legal fund balance was
Denise Palmer stated last year it ended at $19 million. This year it is estimated to be $19 million 54 thousand, which represents 10.5 % of the annual expenditures of the fiscal year 2016.
Donna Davis stated since the districts are splitting at the end of the school year, she feels like if we ask for a bonus at the beginning of the year the excuse will be well we’ve lost 4,000 kids, and we’ve done this and we won’t be able to afford to give you a bonus.
Denise Palmer says everyone has those concerns. This district is in unprecedented waters with the split from Jacksonville and the Deseg funding that will be going away. With the split we are looking at expenditures we have to cut estimated to be a little less than $40 million and 15.4 million in deseg funding. It’s disheartening. Financial standpoint look at how we can continue to serve the employees of this district. Is it one-time bonus or raises. Raises are ongoing and bonuses are a 1 time deal.
Belinda Pearl stated we need to take some of Dr Guess salary away. We need to start taking from the top. Support staff deserve much more.
Denise Palmer says she hears our frustration and we've had issues for a while. We need a balance to help employees who are servicing kids. If we don't have students, teachers or support staff we have nothing. How do we get to where everybody is ok?
Donna Davis stated they took PD from us, as a cut, several years ago. How much money have they saved off of that and how much will they continue to save next year and the year after. We worked for that and they took it from us. We paid to go to classes and everything and they took it away from us.
Belinda Pearl stated that’s why everybody wants a bonus
Donna Davis stated we got up to $1500 a year. Up to $750 in December and up to &750 in May. We haven't gotten that in several years. They have saved quiet a bit on that. So when we ask for a bonus, we are not asking for something extra, it’s something we use to get anyway.
Clint Walker said from his understanding, we are talking about current bonuses for this fiscal year. If we are not able to get that how about putting it in the budget for next year. I understand we are losing 25% of classified staff. That’s $1.35 million for 900 employees we have on hand at that time. At a bonus of $1250 why can’t we put it in the budget each year? Is that something we can look at? He understands that as long as we are I physical distress we can’t receive an increase in pay. That’s why they offered a 1 time bonus a couple of years ago.
Denis Palmer said we can certainly look at it. That’s what she was saying. An increase in pay says it’s forever and a bonus is a 1 time deal.
Denise Palmer She hears what we are saying about PD. She asked how many had read the Fiscal Distress Improvement Plan. Discussed the 40 objectives district has to implement to get out of Fiscal Distress. Cuts were put in place to reverse the declining legal fund balance. Expenditures were more than revenue coming in. They had to list what they were going to do.
Belinda Pearl asked who was affected by this. Not the people upstairs, but the people in the schools. The decisions that are being made have nothing to do with education. Stated that the Chrome books were a waste of money
Emry Chesterfield stated this is Dr Guess 5th year and we are still in some type of fiscal distress. Apparently he's not doing his job. Seems like the Commissioner is going to keep him in place for another year. I could go along with replacing him. In five years other districts have gotten out of fiscal distress, they may have gotten back in, but at least they got out. The record speaks for itself. After this year this district will still be in the same shape unless someone else takes it over. He hasn't done anything about fiscal distress because he doesn't know what he's doing. Ms Palmer you came in on the hot spot. Tax payers are tired and the taxpayers want their district back. This is something they are going to talk to Johnny Key about tomorrow while at the Mills High School forum. It's pitiful taxpayers don't know how their money is being spent in this district and they have no say so. Yet PCSSD is hollering fiscal distress, nothing against you, look around all this new stuff being bought off support staff back. That's support staff money. They don't talk about that. That's whose money it is and it should be on their paycheck. All support staff ask for is a bonus and Dr Guess is against it, yet you might see something new in the district tomorrow. If you are in fiscal distress, you can't spend money like that. We not trying to work you over Ms Palmer. We would appreciate if you would bring the information back, list of names and information Ms Davis asked for.
Emry Chesterfield stated that he understands Dr Guess is against it, but we are still going to discuss it.
Denise Palmer stated she knows some of us have invested a lot into this district. There is an emotional bond, some good some bad. She will be sharing with him personally and letting him know how we feel.
Emry Chesterfield said please share with Dr Guess. Asked if anyone else had questions. Thanked Ms Palmer for coming.
Donna Davis moved to table this discussion until Ms Palmer comes back next month (Feb 10) with the rest of the information.
Charles Blake wanted to know the status on the dual/single seniority list
Emry Chesterfield told him the committee chose the single seniority center
Charles Blake wanted to know if it went to the Advisory Board. His Department is in a bind because people are leaving from Jacksonville because they don't know what's going to happen with the seniority list. Overcrowded buses, hardships and frustrations for students.
Emry Chesterfield stated the committee did vote on the single seniority list, because it was the right thing to do. Ms Davis got it in the minutes. But you got to understand that the administration wants the dual seniority center.
Charles Blake asked if HR could tell us where we are. Can he go to them but he would rather we talk to them.
Emry Chesterfield stated again, it's in the minutes
Charles Blake said it's in the minutes, but it didn't go to the advisory board, so we are still in limbo.
Emry Chesterfield said he would check into it and get back with him on the single/dual seniority center.
Claude Johnson said Single only Transportation
Belinda Pearl said it would help transportation
Emry Chesterfield stated Johnny Key appointed new people to the advisory board. He believes they will meet next Tuesday, but he wasn't for sure
Charles Blake said check on it please
Emry Chesterfield said ok
Donna Davis made a motion to adjourn
Claude Johnson - 2nd
Submitted by ,
Donna Davis, Classified PPC Secretary