Budget shortfall and rising healthcare costs impact CCSD’s support staff

Local News

The Clark County School District’s budget shortfall is having a negative impact on more than just teachers. Some of the support staff say it’s a downward spiral that could eventually hurt the district even more.

After 12 years, Brian Garcia recently quit his job with the Clark County School District. His most recent position was with the IT department.

“The price of gas isn’t going down any time soon; the price of milk, mortgages — they’re not going down, so, to protect ourselves and look after ourselves, we need more income,”  Garcia said.  “If you didn’t have the income that you needed, then you would move on yourself.”

Garcia is one of many people fed up with the lack of change at the Clark County School District. According to Garcia, that’s why he quit. 

“At the school district, we had not had any longevity raises since 2008, I believe,” Garcia said. 

Included in the support staff are bus drivers who get students to and from school, along with maintenance workers who fix problems at the schools.

Many of them feel overlooked.

“We need administrators to run both school and central office, but if you don’t have the workers to do that, then you’re looking at a collapse,” said Garcia. 

Within the past few years, insurance premiums have also gone up.

“Support professionals/police medical contract expires on Aug. 31, 2019.  We are working on the renewal for Sept. 1, 2019,” said a spokesperson for CCSD.  “We are not at the point of knowing what the final renewal will look like and what a potential premium increase to these groups will look like.  All employers are facing annual increases to healthcare, and we are seeking additional dollars from the state for CCSD employees’ benefits.”

“The insurance hurt greatly. My wife has some medical issues, and from one year to the next it hit us very hard in the coverage that we were receiving,” said Garcia. “The morale is at an all-time low. Everyone continues on because the kids need to be educated and we want something better for our future.”

The tentative CCSD budget for the 2019/2020 school year was presented to the board of trustees on Wednesday, but it does not include salary raises. School officials say there simply isn’t enough money for employee raises.

Last year, 102 support staff positions were cut from CCSD’s budget.

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