Farmington Schools staff to get one-time COVID pay

Farmington Public Schools trustees voted unanimously Tuesday to provide every district staff member with a one-time payment acknowledging their service during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Trustees added the item to their 6 p.m. agenda. The payment will equal up to 1.5 percent of each employee’s annual wages.

“The purpose of this is to recognize the tremendous service of all our employees during this time,” board president Terri Weems said.  “We feel it’s important to recognize our employees and show them we value them.”

The move is also consistent with past board action when the district’s financial position improved, teacher Chris DeYonke said. In a public comment during a 4 p.m. special meeting, he pointed out that the district expected a much lower fund balance when negotiating with teachers last summer.

“Please acknowledge the financial sacrifice of your employees through action,” DeYonke said. “Anything else will fall short and seem hollow to them.”

In February, Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Jennifer Kaminski said the district has about $7 million more in its coffers than projected last May. She attributed the difference largely to federal COVID-relief funds, blended enrollment numbers, and greater than anticipated state aid.

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