The McHenry County College board of trustees voted Thursday to give 2-percent raises to its administrators, and will consider next month whether to increase their health care and insurance contributions, board President Mary Miller said.
The raises, which affect 38 administrators, amount to $62,500 and are retroactive to July 1; employees who are at the top of their pay ranges will get a 1.7-percent cost-of-living increase, said Miller, who voted for the raises. The board's vote was 4-3.
The raises are justified because administrators have been working very hard on implementing a new integrated computer system across department, she said.
"It's been a lot of extra work, extra training and extra hours," Miller said, adding that usually it takes two to three years to get such a system up and running, but MCC is on track to get it done in 18 months.
Trustee Ronald Parrish, who voted against the raises, said he doesn't believe in across-the-board raises. "(They) are just not motivational, not inspirational, not rewarding and not very effective," he said. "We should be doing wage adjustments on the basis of merit."
The board postponed making a decision regarding administrators' contributions to health care and insurance premiums, Miller and Parrish said. Administrators currently contribute 25 percent, but board members wanted to get information about how much it would cost them to increase that to 30 percent.
"That's the way the private sector has moved too, because the health care cost is one of the highest costs that employers have besides the base wages," Miller said.
Last month, a consultant told the board that MCC's pay ranges for nonteaching staff are between 3 and 12 percent below market averages at other area colleges. When compared to the private sector, MCC employees make between 15 to 30 percent less than their peers at the minimum and maximum ranges respectively, the consultant said.
Administrators were given 3-percent raises for the academic year that just ended.