Public school workers in Montgomery County will see their first pay raise in years, school officials said Monday.
Three different employee unions—the Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA), the Service Employees International Union Local 500 (SEIU) and the Montgomery County Association of Administrators and Principals (MCAAP)—negotiated a fiscal year 2013 salary increase of about 3.4 percent for their members.
The raises, which will come after a three-year freeze in cost-of-living increases, will cost Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) $20 million, or about one percent of its $2.1 billion budget.
“This agreement is about sustainability. If we are going to sustain our history of excellence and sustain the reputation of Montgomery County as a great place to live, we must invest in the staff that does this outstanding work,” said Superintendent Dr. Joshua P. Starr.
“MCPS has the best employees in public education and this agreement allows us to recognize that excellence in a fiscally responsible way," Starr said.
Under the new deals, the school system will save about $7.5 million on employee health insurance by making workers pay more for prescription drugs and doctor visits.
If union members agree to the raises negotiated by their leaders, the Board of Education will vote on the budget June 14.
Employee compensation talks were delayed this year by the Maryland General Assembly’s failure to agree on the state budget, MCPS said.
A so-called "doomsday" budget that was was replaced with a new fiscal year 2012 state budget last week after .