WATERLOO — Waterloo Community Schools’ custodial, maintenance and food service staff proposed a 3 percent raise during initial bargaining Wednesday. District administrators offered about half of that.
The district’s suggested 1.5 percent boost amounts to a 25-cent hourly increase in base wages.
The single-sentence proposal for the 2018-19 contract was the extent of administrators’ offer to the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 2749.
The employee group handed out a 19-page document and proposed a multi-year contract starting July 1. “The union is proposing a five-year contract,” said Robin White, who represents AFSCME Local 2749.
About 220 employees are covered by the contract.
They include electricians, plumbers, carpenters, utility workers, environmental technicians, asbestos workers, custodians, bakers, cooks, cafe managers, safety monitors and more.
Currently wages range from $13.63 to $24.02 per hour, depending on position and years of experience. In addition, there are longevity increases for longtime employees and differential rates for leadership positions.
Along with the wage increase, the employees proposed regulations for a number of items, such as grievance procedures, leaves, hours of work, schedules, overtime, holidays, vacations and posting for vacancies.
“A lot of what we’re proposing is in the prior contract,” White told the administrators. The items were removed last year as allowed by legislation that had just been signed into law. Aside from wages, many items were made permissive by the changes, meaning they were removed from contracts unless both sides agreed to keep them in.