Mediation fails to broker Eagle Point schools pact

EAGLE POINT — The Eagle Point School District and its employee union failed to come to an agreement during a round of mediation hearings this week, but both sides reported progress on some issues.

Despite several hours of talks Friday and Saturday, the threat of an employee strike remains "very much" a possibility, said Debbie Brudevold, union bargaining chairwoman.

"We did come closer to an understanding on some issues and remain hopeful there is more progress to come," Brudevold said.

She declined to elaborate on the particulars of Saturday's mediation hearing,

Sticking points include salary increases, video surveillance cameras on campus and the administration's push for a three-year contract with a salary freeze in the final two years.

Brudevold said the administration's offer of a 2 percent salary increase for all employees, including teachers, janitors, secretaries and aides, and the pay freeze are not acceptable.

"We don't know what sort of economic climate this state will experience in three years," she said. "We are arguing for a two-year contract."

There will be no more meetings until after spring break. The district is approaching the union's March 31 strike vote.

Brudevold said a recent survey of union employees revealed the majority were prepared to strike should an agreement prove elusive.

"We felt we had a lot of good discussion and really came to some agreement on some issues," said Michael Remick, District No. 9 human resources director.

Remick said the district will meet with the union again on either March 30 or 31.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 776-4471; or e-mail

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