Friday, December 28, 2007

Chair Dr. Kathy Kleinlein and the Sarasota County School Board Helps Our Troops

The Sarasota County Veterans Commission thanks Chair Dr. Kathy Kleinlein, a fellow veteran, the entire Sarasota County School Board and Superintendent Norris for their outstanding support of our troops.

Englewood Sun
December 23, 2007

School employees in military to be made whole
by Audrey Blackwell
Staff writer

The School Board of Sarasota County will pay employees recalled to active federal military duty who lose pay as a result of their service.

The school board approved the policy change at its Dec. 11 meeting. It affects employees called to military duty retroactively to Sept. 11, 2001.

The policy change applies to employees who were in an appointed status as of the approval date of the change. The board will make up the difference in pay for the duration of the recall.

The measure should cost the district about $20,000 for the retroactive portion, according to Scott Ferguson, communications specialist for the district.

"I talked with Scott Lempe, our chief operating officer, and he said that if he drew a line in the sand today, fewer than 12 people would be affected retroactively and only two have lost pay because of military service," Ferguson said.

Ferguson does not know what the cost would be going forward.

To qualify for the wage supplement, the employee must apply for it and produce a copy of a Military Leave and Earnings Statement for each month for which he or she is entitled to the wages, a news release from the school district said.

"Compensation will also be made for normal school district longevity pay that would otherwise be lost due to time away from the job due to federal military service," the release said.

The release quotes Board Chair Kathy Kleinlein as stating: "We adopted this measure because of the men and women who serve our country in military uniforms during situations such as our current wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. They are already making sacrifices for their country, and we want to make sure they and their families do not suffer any additional hardships."

Kleinlein is a veteran of the Army National Guard's 42nd Infantry Rainbow Division in New York.

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