Dear Editor: In my opinion, there is a lot of incorrect information going around about the Board of Ed. It’s put out there to deflect what’s really going on. It’s time that the people of Secaucus know some interesting points.
1) Being president of the union (S.E.A.), Bobby Anderson’s job is to get his 200 plus members the most amount of money he can. That’s his job and he does his job very well. Raises in the past for the S.E.A. under the past administration were: 2003, 3 percent raise; 2004, 4.7 percent raise; 2005, 4.7 percent raise; 2006, 4.7 percent raise; 2007, 4.7 percent raise; 2008, 4.7 percent raise; 2009, 4.7 percent raise; and in 2010, 4.7 percent raise.
Now in 2011 under the new superintendent Ms. Randina the union received a 1.75 percent raise. Mr. Anderson wanted a 2.0 percent salary increase knowing that after the budget was defeated, mayor and council reduced the school budget to give the S.E.A. a 1.5 percent salary increase. This was the first line on the revised budget that came from town hall. Any increase over the 1.5 percent would mean the money would have to come from someplace else, yet he still asked for 2 percent increase. In 2012 he wanted a 4.8 percent salary increase and in 2013 a 5 percent salary increases for all members. He was used to getting what he wants. He keeps saying he wants to go back to the ways things were done in the past. He and the past administrator would “work things out”. He would like this to continue.
In this economy with unemployment so high and many people worrying about whether they will have a job or able to pay a utility bill, makes me believe he is out of touch with what is right and fair for all involved, which includes the Secaucus tax payer.
2) Bobby Anderson did not lead his union into the State Insurance Fund, which is the state health insurance for all retires and is his own insurance carrier. The mayor, a few councilmen, and the town insurance broker made a proposal and strongly suggested the union go into the state fund.
Yes, the union did make some changes and that helped the tax payers, but going to the state plan would have saved the Secaucus tax payers hundreds of thousands of dollars more on health insurance. In addition, Mr. Anderson would not even try to get his membership together over the summer to discuss the health insurance (other teacher unions have summer meetings). This costs tax payers over $30,000.00 each month for June, July, August, and September, total cost over $120,000. That’s two teachers’ salaries and could have been additional programs for the children. Bottom line, he could have could have emailed the information but Mr. Anderson doesn’t email.
I’m sorry if this offended anyone. That was not the purpose of the letter. We have a great staff. My point here is that in the past 3 years Mr. Anderson repeatedly refused to work with the superintendent, publicly stated he will not meet with the Board of Ed. to discuss issues, and apparently doesn’t take the advice of the mayor and council.