Mt. View contract at impasse

BY TOM FONTANA
Corrrespondent

With negotiations seemingly at an impasse, Mt. View may need to “go to fact-finding” to try to settle on a contract with its teachers union.

At the school board meeting Monday night, July 28, when asked how meetings between the school board’s Labor Relations Committee and the Mt. View Education Association are going, committee chairman and board president Thomas Stoddard replied, “We don’t have any more meetings scheduled at this point. We may meet one more time, but I think we may have to go to fact-finding.”

Teachers have been working without a contract for about two years. If the board and union find themselves deadlocked on an agreement, both parties may hire a neutral entity, or ‘fact-finder,’ to assess their disagreements and offer recommendations for a settlement. If within a month or two no agreement is reached, the long-range option could be a teacher’s strike.

Maintenance director Robert Taylor offered the board a price quote of $12,700 for installing a sidewalk between the high school and elementary school. The walkway would be 275 ft. long and 6 ft. wide, with a federally mandated ‘rest area’ for wheelchair or other handicapped-accessable use.

In relation to other sidewalks around the schools, Taylor said the company recommended installing a heating unit under the concrete platform outside the lobby entrance to the high school, where the walk tends to buckle due to freezing conditions.

Taylor also suggested that crosswalk designations on the roadway in front of the schools need repainting.
“The state won’t do it anymore,” he informed the board. “I asked and was told they did it once, but that was supposed to be a one-time deal. They said if it had been done more than once, we were lucky.”

In its intent to replace the telephone system in the district, the board asked Taylor to investigate long-distance phone rates for a new digital phone system with NEP.

“Just about every call we make is long distance,” Stoddard commented. “The only exchanges that aren’t are 222, 434, and 456. We should look into have two or three cell phones available in the schools for long distance calls.”

Taylor also offered a quote of $17,500 for an electric generator for the district’s waste treatment plant, with an estimate of $9,270 for installation.

The board approved Mark Whitehead as varsity girls soccer coach, and Bill Norton as assistant varsity girls soccer coach.

Business manager Joseph Patchcoski announced that the district will be advertising to hire more contract drivers because of an increase in the district’s transportation needs for special education services.