Sometimes the irresponsibility of your elected officials goes so beyond even a cynic’s expectations that one must wonder if the clown rampage has hit SAU55. In this case, as in most, the staggering irresponsibility affects your taxes and for a long, long time.
The SAU auditors wrote this extremely telling paragraph in their long overdue audit for 2014-2015:
We noted that employees of the School Administrative Unit can earn compensatory time for working weekends and holidays and this time can be used as paid leave at a later date, or is paid out upon an employee leaving the School Administrative Unit. However, there is no formal policy adopted by the School Administrative Unit Board that addresses the earning, use, and pay out of this time. We recommend the Board adopt such a policy in order to ensure the accrual and use of this time is treated identically, and to protect the School Administrative Unit from any unforeseen liabilities that might arise from the payment of compensation for which there is no documented procedures.
Think what this is saying. Money is being given to people when they leave the SAU for which there is no documented procedure!
At the last SAU meeting, the board voted to assemble a team of at least 6 people to carve out a policy on this issue. Here is what they came up with…. in total:
The School Administration Unit can earn compensatory time for working weekends and holidays. The Superintendent or designee will develop and implement a procedure of internal controls for earning, use, and payout of compensatory time.
Really? No stipulation as to what the compensation will be, how much can be accrued, under what conditions it will be awarded and to whom? It isn’t even clear if this is allowing money in lieu of time taken. What does “payout of compensatory time” mean? Does this apply to professional staff as well as hourly staff?
Why not just tear up our whole policy manual and stick a white flag up at the SAU office saying “Whatever the superintendent decides is fine with us!” (All the better if we don’t have to think about it and even better if we don’t know about it, too.)
Here’s what a district with some brain function came up with and it’s far from perfect:
SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE UNIT #44
Northwood School District
POLICY # GDBC – COMPENSATORY TIME
For hourly employees, the District will pay time and a half for all hours worked over 40 hours per week.
There is no provision for compensatory time. The District does not allow compensatory time.
Under no circumstances shall an employee receive compensation for work completed at home.
ADOPTED BY THE BOARD
May 21, 2001
By paying out comp time as money on leaving service, this pushes up the pension of the person departing and our pension liability as a result…. just about forever. This is damaging to taxpayers, self-serving to SAU employees and a very poor reflection on the management of SAU55 who seem to have no shame as to how far they wish to shove their hands down the taxpayers’ pocket. Their budget can’t be touched by voters. Only your SAU board can rein it in but the cult of superintendent worship runs unchecked.. and so does the SAU budget.
The SAU board will be approving the SAU budget tonight. Watch not a single change be made to the budget. White flags forever!