Flint school district employees are facing a deep cut in pay and benefits.
Interim school superintendent Larry Watkins announced today that the district and its unions have reached a deal that calls for a 19% cut in compensation.
Specific details about cuts to wages and benefits are still being negotiated between the district and its unions. The cuts will take effect in July.
Watkins says the cuts are a key component of the district’s deficit reduction plan that’s being submitted to the state next week.
“We’re in this together. It’s not us against them,” says Watkins, “In order for our district to survive we have to work together.”
Ethel Johnson is the president of the United Teachers of Flint. She says she’s not happy with the agreement.
“It’s very hard for us,” Johnson told reporters. “But together I think we can make a difference for the children of Flint.”
The Flint school board will vote on the cuts next week. Union members will be briefed on the agreement on Monday as well.
Meanwhile, the Flint school district is still waiting to hear if the state will allow it to borrow nearly $16 million to pay off its bills.