“This administration needs to quit making up new positions or job titles,” argued Montoursville Area School Board member Ron Snell as the board was set to vote on adding the position of assistant business manager to employees in the district.
“Just as a district our size doesn’t need an assistant superintendent, it also doesn’t need an assistant business manager,” he added.
Snell contended that the employee in the business office who was to assume the new position had done her job “exceptionally well,” which he felt deserved a merit raise or a bonus.
“You don’t create another job title that will amount to an increase of over $8,000 total, when PSER’s and Social Security are factored in,” Snell said.
He went on to cite a conversation that he had with Brandy Smith, district business manager, about ways to cut the district’s budget deficit.
“She told me she sees the only way to trim the deficit is to cut programs and/or positions,” Snell said.
“She said if I could think of any other way to cut the deficit, to let her know,” he said. “I’m letting her know now — not adding this position/job title is a start.”
Following Snell’s remarks, the board voted to create the position of assistant business manager and to move Jessica Reich into that position at a salary of $53,000 pro rata for the remainder of the current school year with no increase in salary for the 2022-23 school year.
In terms of the budget for the upcoming fiscal year, Smith said that the board would not vote on a preliminary budget at this time.
“We are not approving a preliminary. We are not ready to,” Smith stated. She added that the district had just received contracts with the intermediate unit and corrections needed to be made before proceeding with the budget process. The final budget is expected to be approved at the June 14 meeting of the board.
Smith also said that the district had received its Homestead/Farmstead allocation with an increase for qualifying properties. Property owners which had received $134 will now get $170.
More than 1,300 homes in the borough qualify for the credit.
In other business, the board approved summer school programs for the high school which will run for six weeks from June 13 through July 29. Two enrichment courses are being offered at a cost of $200 per course. The 2021-22 summer skills program for Tier II/ Tier III students in grades K-7 was also approved by the board.
The purchase and installation of new playground equipment at Lyter Elementary School was given the OK by the board. The equipment will be purchased from Ely Associates at a cost of $141,121. It was announced that a private donor had pledged to match dollar-for-dollar money raised by the PTO for the playground upgrade.
Under personnel, the board approved the following professional staff for 2022-23 at the pay rate listed: Kiersha Whitehead, special education, $79,146; Stephanie Matlack, special education, $60,304; Erick Edler, secondary school counselor, $79,146; Faith Dunkleberger, reading specialist, $52.600; and Megan Daily, science, $50,200.
They accepted the resignation of Nathan Kimble as head cross country coach and hired Aaron Runkle to replace Kimble at a rate of $3,000.
Other personnel items approved were: substitute teacher list: Kiley Nierzwicki, Tearra Brezan, Melissa Walburn; support staff: Lauren Guinter, healthcare aide, $14.25 per hour and Douglas Sauter, custodian; guest teacher list: Ryan Bastian, Jordana Wagner, Robert Lynn Jr.; substitute support staff: Karent McCourt, substitute secretary.
The next meeting of the board will be at 7 p.m. May 24 at the Montoursville Area High School, 700 Mulberry St.