Superintendent Russ Jones will remain employed with the school district for another four years after the voted 4-1 to renew his contract May 29.
The contract begins Aug. 2, 2013 and ends July 31, 2017. Jones will be paid $125,804 annually for 206 working days.
(The entire contract is included in this post in the form of a .pdf.) His current salary of $122,200 annually will remain frozen until the new contract is effective next year.
"I'm still not happy with things on this particular contract," Board Member Rod Armstrong said prior to voting.
Armstrong cited some of the following items as to why he was voting against the contract:
1. The $5,000 merit stipend:
Item 10 f: "The superintendent will be awarded $5,000 merit pay stipend for each year the district scores 100.0 or above on the Ohio Department of Education's Performance Index."
Armstrong said his issue with the above is that the district has for the last several years, scored 102 or higher on the .
"I think we should have changed it to 104 or 105 ... so it's an incentive to do better," he said.
2. An increase in annuity:
Item 10 g: "The board agrees to pay to the superintendent supplemental compensation each year of this agreement, which, at the discretion of the superintendent may be contributed to a tax-deferred annuity or other tax-deferred compensation plan selected by the superintendent; or paid directly to the superintendent as an allowance. The amount of such annual supplemental compensation shall be $10,000 per contract year."
The amount in the previous contract was $5,000.
3. Approving the contract now:
"A year and four months between now and the next time frame ... I think that’s way too early," he said.
Board Member Karen Wright said it is common courtesy to "give an administrator vote of confidence or to give them enough time to find employment elsewhere."
Board Member Fred Bonacci said he fears waiting until later to approve the contract because Jones may want to look at other school districts.
Despite Armstrong’s objections listed above, and a few others, the other four members of the board were in favor of approving the contract.
"I think the contract that has been brought to us for renewal is fair, particularly given [the superintendent's] accomplishments," said Board President Karen Powers. "We know that you are determined to be at the top of student achievement."
When asked for comment about Armstrong's "no" vote, Jones said, "I respect his opinion."
He also said he "appreciates the board's support. I'm excited about our accomplishments and I look forward to our continued progress."