School board OKs contract to keep treasurer

By Dedra Cordle
Staff Writer

The South-Western City Schools Board of Education has reached an agreement to keep the current district treasurer through 2025.

At the July 8 meeting, the board unanimously approved a new five-year contract for Treasurer Hugh Garside, which is slated to begin Aug. 1, 2020. Under the terms of the agreement, Garside will receive a base salary of $170,000 with a 3 percent increase each year of the contract pending a satisfactory performance during an annual evaluation.

The contract also provides Garside with life insurance, health insurance, vision insurance, disability insurance, administrator liability insurance, employees Medicare and local, state and national professional dues.

The board has also agreed to pay 90 percent of the premium for family or single health insurance.

The board praised Garside for his abilities to manage bond issue finances and communicate the district’s financial information to the community in an easily understood format.

“Mr. Garside had been extremely helpful to the board and has attempted to make the district’s financial information readily available and as transparent as possible to the public,” said board president Mindy Garverick in a written statement. “As a board, we rely heavily on the treasurer to keep us informed of any changes in our financial situation as we continue to look for cost saving measures and remain accountable to the community.”

Garside has been with the district for nearly two decades, serving as treasurer from 1998 to 2004 and then from 2007 to present. Garside said at the end of the new contract, he will have served as the longest tenured treasurer in the district’s history.

He remarked that has loved being a part of the district, as well as the greater community.

“The district and the area has expanded immensely since I first served as treasurer,” he said. “I am proud that I will be around to continue to see its growth.”

Under his tenure, the district has seen multiple reconstruction projects take place. In his first term, he oversaw the project that constructed Central Crossing High School and a new district service center. In his second term, he oversaw phase one of the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission project that featured 13 replacement elementary schools, the renovation of two elementary schools and a new Franklin Heights High School. He is currently overseeing the budget for phase two of the $160 million OFCC project, which will replace the oldest middle schools and provide renovations to Jackson Middle School and East Franklin Elementary.

“It is my goal for phase two to be on time and on budget,” he said. “So far, we are two for two when it comes to being on time and on budget for our major construction projects and I hope to see that trend continue with phase two.”

The board also approved a three-year 2.5 percent salary increase for non-South-Western Administrators Association members. Those members include, but are not limited to, the executive director of communications, the assistant supervisor of curriculum, and administrative assistants.

In other news, the board approved the purchase of additional buses to add to its fleet.

According to the board, they have ordered seven 84-passenger transit buses, two 78-passenger conventional buses, three 54-passenger with lift buses and two 48-passenger with lift buses at a cost of $1.37 million. Each bus comes equipped with radios, cameras and GPS systems.

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