Wouldn’t it be great to get a pay raise like Stan Rheingans?

We are in an economic crisis. There are job losses (Flexsteel and Diamond Jo), but the Dubuque Community School Board agreed to increase Rheingans’ salary by $5,071.73 for a 2020-2021 school year salary of $220,510. Then to top it off, he gets an extra $22,000 added to his retirement account for each of the last three years, which the contracts refer to as an “annual sum.”

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It’s his job to do a good job. Isn’t that why he was hired? Area workers who are paid $10 an hour or less would sure like to have a board that is so generous, but politicians don’t want to increase the minimum wage. It’s corporate America — take from the poor and give to the rich. Where is the justice in pay raises for public employees who make more money then most people can even imagine? Don’t forget their retirement plan (IPERS) which will benefit them more annually than many people earn in a year.

How does that pay increase and retirement bonus sound to someone who does a good job but earns an income that is poverty level without a retirement plan? Not good, especially when we might also see an increase in property taxes to cover the losses by the economic downturn and pay increases for public employees. In addition, the Iowa Utilities Board approved the Cardinal-Hickory Creek Transmission Line, which will likely increase our utility bills.