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Pay cuts may contribute more to problem

August 25, 2010 - Dear Editor,

We've heard so much in the past months about businesses, some failing, that have been given tax dollars with no strings attached, who then turn around and pay big bonuses to their departing CEOs. This news made most hardworking Americans angry and rightly so, but at whom should our anger be directed? The company had contracts, contracts that needed to be honored and when given millions or billions of taxpayer's dollars with no restrictions, they honored their contracts and some took vacations. Thank you, Uncle Sam.

Here in Michigan, where we're facing the so-called loss of tax revenue and our governor has declared that cuts must be made affecting our public schools, to hear that one area school district was giving $70,000 to retiring administrators was not well received either, I'm sure. (I know I'm not smiling.) It seems that those at the top are almost always "protected" from the same devastation that the average everyday "Joe", you and I workers get hit with all too frequently these days.

There are however, some schools like Goodrich, that have been creative and tried to affect as few employees/families as possible when needed cuts were made. At Goodrich instead of having one principal per elementary school they have a "floating" principal who is principal for more than one school. Fenton Schools is another willing to make cuts from the "top," cutting two assistant principals, a curriculum/instruction director, reduced their support staff hours, took a 3 percent pay cut for central office administration and they are looking into a different insurance package. Kudos to those school boards and administrators who are willing to work hard together to try to find solutions that adversely affect the fewest families possible.

I live in Brandon Township, to expect custodians, bus drivers and other support staff to take cuts that when totaled amounts to 25 percent or more may prove to be devastating to 30 or 40 families. Taking this approach may contribute more to the problem than the solution if these workers who mostly live in the district face foreclosure or bankruptcy resulting in even less tax revenue.

Debbie Wagner

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