Letters to the Editor09-02-2015

Saitta weighs in on sick leave policy

Dear Editor,

I want to respond to the article about the employee sick leave policy.

The school district gives employees 12 to 15 paid sick days a year. Employees can accumulate the paid sick days they don’t use. At retirement, the district allows employees to use the first 90 days to extend their service time by three months for retirement pay purposes. It then pays those retiring employees a bonus equal to their daily pay rate for the next 45 unused sick days. It is called a bonus because they are paid twice for those days.

For example, let’s say an employee is working 200 days and making $60,000 ($300 a day). He is given 13 sick days. Whether he takes zero or 13 sick days that year, he is paid $60,000. If he didn’t take any sick days, at retirement he would receive a bonus of $3,900 (13 sick days not used times $300 equals $3,900).

Retiring employees could retire with up to a $20,000 bonus for unused and accumulated sick days. This bonus gives employees incentive not to use all their sick days through the years and stay with the district for the long haul. It is a quite generous sick leave policy.

There is another bonus for employees who leave the district for reasons other than retirement, and this was the subject of the recent vote. The district administration recommended the board pay those departing employees $50 a day for up to 45 days of accumulated but unused sick days.

I voted against this bonus for the employees leaving the district. The district is spending a lot of additional money now to boost pay. Additionally, medical costs are going through the roof. The district pays most of those increases. Money is tight in the budget, and I’d rather see that $50 bonus money spent in the classroom or used to sure up compensation for existing employees.

Alex Saitta

School board trustee



Sleazy and deplorable

Dear Editor,

I find it odd that while a local newspaper reported Rep. Neal Collins as lamenting that 48 people were denied access and not recognized by the state GOP, it failed to mention an important determining factor why that decision was made. We can only speculate why this omission occurred.

According to the Greenville News, state GOP chairman Matt Moore said Collins had “gamed the system.”

Obviously, not only was this recognized by all the legal participants at the meeting, but also determined to be so by the state GOP, who, by affirming the convention, overwhelming agreed that county GOP chairman Phillip Bowers did, in fact, properly follow the rules, except for a few minor errors, and that Collins and his cohorts were simply gaming the system, deliberately hiding his herded delegates from the county party for obvious reasons.

I don’t really consider this decision a “compromise,” but more of a recognition of the techniques Collins and certain liberal tax-and-spend groups behind him, loaded with former Democrats (as is Collins) will stoop to in order to hijack the county GOP and forward their progressive agenda.

We would expect sleazy behind-the-scenes activity such as this to come from Democrats, but to have backstabbing activity like this being conducted by someone who calls himself one of our own is deplorable and demonstrates a true lack of character.

Dennis Reinert