Ascension school district employees get 3 percent raise

The Ascension Parish School Board approved a 3 percent pay raise Tuesday for all school district employees, the first permanent raise since 2008.

“We have such a committed and excellent group of employees,” Superintendent Patrice Pujol said before the board voted. “It’s certainly less than they deserve, but we certainly recommend they get a permanent pay raise.”

After the vote approving the raise, School Board President Troy Gautreau said that pay was one of the top items mentioned as an area for improvement in an employee survey given this school year and the School Board took it seriously.

The new pay raise will go into effect July 1, the beginning of the School Board’s new fiscal year. The raise will be funded by property taxes, which have increased as property values have risen, said Diane Allison, director of business services.

Last year, as well, the Assessor’s Office added a number of previously untaxed properties to the tax rolls, resulting in an additional $6 million in School Board revenue annually, Allison said.

On Monday night, the School Board also approved adjustments made to four of more than 70 voting precincts in the parish. The change was needed to facilitate previously approved changes to the School Board’s seven election districts.

Federal law requires the election districts be redrawn every 10 years, according to census figures. The new School Board election district boundaries are based on the 2010 census.

Last November, the School Board approved the redrawn election districts, developed by the Gonzales office of Magellan Strategies.

On Tuesday, the School Board approved the subdividing and renumbering of four precincts in the Galvez and Dutchtown areas. Voters would still go to their regular voting place to vote.