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Worries grow about integrity of income tax data, long term liabilities... CTU says overdue raises coming by Christmas

More than three months after the leaders of the Chicago Teachers Union fast talked the union’s 30,000 remaining members into approving an agreement that didn’t specify when they would get their raise (or even if they would be paid accurately and on time), the union claimed in early December that the raises (and back pay would be completed for all members by Christmas.

In a December 3 e-mail to union members, CTU President Marilyn Stewart wrote:

According to CEO Arne Duncun [sic], CTU Members should be receiving their contractual pay raises on the following dates:

PSRPs - December 7th

Teachers - December 14th

All members retroactive pay from July 1st - December 14th, to be paid on December 21st

The 4 percent raise includes all salaries and stipends in the contract. We urge our members to be diligent in computing the 4% per weekly amount for each week prior to the December 14th paycheck in which the retroactive pay is received to assure its accuracy.

Please contact the CTU immediately if you find errors.

The union’s leaders did not explain why they had allowed the Board of Education to determine when the raises would be paid, or why the Board didn’t have to pay interest on the money it had delayed paying the union’s more than 30,000 members.

Union leaders have appeared at several meetings of the Chicago Board of Education since last March, when a new payroll system (designed by the People Soft computer company) went on line. Since then, thousands of CPS employees have seen their paychecks lowered, as CPS officials have scrambled to fix problems with the system.

By September, the public also heard for the first time that the problems with the payroll system meant that hundreds of veteran teachers who retired at the end of the 2006-2007 school year were not receiving their full pensions, because CPS had failed to provide the Chicago Teachers Pension Fund (CRPF, an independent body from both CPS and the CTU) with accurate information about the retired teachers’ final year at work.

Some observers are also worried that the problems CPS has created will have an impact on the accuracy of payroll information provided to the federal and state governments next month for income tax purposes. 



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