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Clark County School Board approves contract for school police

The frozen salaries of Clark County School District’s nearly 170 police officers will be thawed, the same as was done for teachers, administrators and support staff whose contracts have already been decided for the 2013-14 school year.

The Clark County School Board approved its 2013-14 contract with the Police Officers Association of the Clark County School District on Thursday, with pay raises costing $421,000. In addition to a universal pay raise of 4 percent, the previously frozen system of automatic pay raises for seniority will be restored.

Another notable change is that the School District will also pay for police officers’ share of a state-mandated 1.375 percent increase to the state retirement system. Officers must also earn Peace Officers Standards and Training certification.

In all, the district will be paying about $35 million more in employee contracts this school year due to similar pay raises for its 18,000 teachers, 1,300 school administrators and 11,000 support staff workers. Most of the increase comes from the $27.4 million in new costs for the teachers’ contract.

The Las Vegas Metro Chamber of Commerce has been vocal about its concern for such widespread pay raises when the district is raising concern about being short on funds and is struggling to keep its aging schools operational.

“There are many needs in the School District,” said Paul Moradkhan, director of government affairs for the chamber, asking the School Board to be “cognizant” that pay raises add up.

District employees have their contracts, but one loose end remains. The district is in talks with all its employee unions to create a district-wide health plan for 39,000 employees. Currently, the district oversees some employees’ health insurance coverage while it pays some labor unions to provide coverage for its workers.

Contact reporter Trevon Milliard at tmilliard@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0279.

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