Money Stock 2

It is being recommended the Harrisonburg City School Board approve bonuses for all employees at its Tuesday meeting.

Chief Financial Officer Tracy Shaver stated in his recommendation that the COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the work employees have performed this school year. Staff have transitioned to both virtual and in-person learning, enhanced daily cleaning routines, deployed technology devices to all students as well as into the community, and delivered student meals in new and unique ways, according to his recommendation.

Although staff salary increases were reduced from 3% to 1.5% this fiscal year as a result of the pandemic, employees have continued to rise to the challenge of going above and beyond in every way, Shaver said.

As a result, staff recommended extending end-of-year bonus payments for HCPS staff which are similar in nature to the employee bonus payments that were previously distributed to Harrisonburg City staff in December 2020.

The recommendation is for full-time Harrisonburg City Public School employees to receive a $2,000 bonus payment. Part-time HCPS employees and temporary service employees who have worked at least 50% of the time during the school year would receive a $1,000 bonus payment.

Bonus payments will be processed in the June 2021 payroll.Throughout the fiscal year 2021 school year, cost savings as well as unanticipated increases in state and federal revenues, has created an end-of-year surplus.

HCPS would use a portion of this surplus to fund employee bonus payments. Bonus payments require no additional local tax dollars from the city.

In addition to bonuses, School Board members will hear an update from Superintendent Michael Richards on the HHS2 project, and what construction Nielsen plans to undertake this summer with funding from the American Recovery Plan Act.

Richards will also be giving an update on summer school and reopening plans for Harrisonburg High School this fall.

The full agenda for the meeting can be viewed on the School Board website.

The School Board meeting will be held on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in City Council Chambers.

The public can also view the meeting on the local government channel on Xfinity and also on the City’s website at

Contact Megan Williams at 574-6272 or Follow Megan on Twitter @DNR_Learn

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