Petition presented to CHS board calling for elector meeting on board salaries

A Central High School District resident presented the board Tuesday with a 115-signature petition asking for a meeting of electors to be called to consider board salaries.

Board salaries were eliminated by a one-vote margin of the electors present at the budget meeting in October. The move is binding and can only be changed by another vote of the electors. An elector is any legal voter who lives in the district.

The petition presented Tuesday did not take a position on whether salaries should be restored, Cassity said. But he made it clear that personally, he does favor restoring pay for the board.

“I think the stipend paid to you is a token amount …” Cassity said. “It’s more of a sign of respect.”

The board will consult with its attorney to see how to proceed, board President Mary Ellen Pearsall said.

Cassity said it took him and Jean Poepping and Barb Ingram about a month to collect the signatures. He said heĀ approachedĀ it not as seeking people’s stance on salaries, but more on that only 14 people ultimately made the decision.

Annual board salaries until the October action were:

  • President, $2,400.
  • Vice president, $2,400.
  • Treasurer, $2,400.
  • Clerk, $2,400.
  • Members, $2,180.


  1. Darrel Damon says:

    Mr. Cassity is correct and incorrect in that only 14 people untimately made the decision. It was actually 27 people who made the decision – 14 who voted for the salary reduction to zero and 13 who voted against it. But his point is well taken.

    Perhaps this will serve as a wake up call to all electors in the district – if you want to have a say in matters that come up in the school district annual meetings, plan to attend and vote. Not being there is giving up your vote to those who do attend.

    The original amendment to the motion for salaries to set it to zero was made for the same reason that Mr. Cassity states that he is asking for a revote – because the salaries are a token amount. It is not about the money – it is about the signal that the board is sending to the votors. The signal is that even in these economic hard times, the board is not all that willing to give up even tokens.

    It was reported here in WestOfTheI that at least one board member said that they would have to go out and find a part time job now that salaries are eliminated. That tells me that some members may be on the board for the salary and perks and may not necessarily be on the board for the kids.

    Someone else also said that the salaries are used to offset expenses that the board members incur doing board business. That is also incorrect. Board members get expenses reimbursed, OVER AND ABOVE salaries. That is precisely the reason why I did not offer an amendment to modify expense reimbursements. The board members can still get all their expenses reimbursed regardless of the status of salary.

    Mr. Cassity’s last comment can be turned 180 degrees. Salary is “more of a sign of respect.” What about the respect that the board members should show to those electors who are in foreclosure or on unemployment or losing their homes?

    Having said all this, I applaud Mr. Cassity’s action. It shows that he is concerned and is willing to take action. That, in the end, is all anyone can really do. Well done, Mr. Cassity.

  2. Darrel Damon says:

    One additional piece of data. The original story does not indicate that board members who serve on the negotiations committee get an additional salary.

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