FAIRBORN, Ohio (WDTN) - The Fairborn Board of Education canceled three union collective bargaining contracts Wednesday morning.
The board met in executive session for about an hour and voted to cancel the contracts for teachers, support staff, bus drivers, custodians and service workers.
Board treasurer Eric Beavers told 2 NEWS the action was taken to avoid a July 1 deadline that would have mandated automatic pay increases.
Beavers said the district is running a deficit of about $1.5 million. The contract's automatic increases would have added another $1 million to that total. With still no word on how much funding is coming from the state, the district had to make a move.
"We've tried to avoid this at all costs but due to our financial situation we need to take this necessary action to freeze our costs," said Beavers.
More than 500 employees are affected by the vote.
President of the Fairborn Education Association, Mandy Creekmur said, "I'm very surprised. We have been to the negotiation table and we would like to have a contract. I am saddened they took this action."
"It's disappointing but I feel there are some avenues that we need to address and look into," said Jeffrey Whited, President of the Fairborn Classifed Education Association.
The silver lining is that both sides say they are committed to coming back to the table and working out a contract before school starts.
"Our most important job is to education the kids and we need every single person in those unions," said Beavers
"We just want to do what's best for the kids," agreed Creekmur.
"This is far from over. We'll just have to play it by ear," said Whited
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