At $262,797 a year, retiring Coopersville superintendent is by far highest paid school chief in West Michigan
It shows O'Neill, leading a 2,600-student district, out-earns Grand Rapids Superintendent Bernard Taylor, who gets $216,321 in salary and annuity to lead the region's largest district, at 18,700 students.
O'Neill's pay also approaches what Thomas Haas makes as Grand Valley State University president: $225,000 in salary and $40,000 in deferred compensation. Haas' perks also include a university-provided house.
Rockford Superintendent Michael Shibler is the highest-paid suburban school chief, and appeared to be the highest-paid superintendent when The Press did its survey. He is paid $210,961 and has asked for a pay freeze in each of the past two years. Rockford has 8,000 students.
It is unlikely any of you have heard of this school district, it's population is a mixture of farmers and middle income suburbanites. Not a poor district but certainly not a wealthy one.
This brings to mind the case in Bell, California.
We have elected officials getting into office and raiding our piggy bank.
Now the most obvious solution is to vote all of the school board members in this district. Is that enough though?
This man has his money, money the people of this district will not see again. Further, his pension is likely based on his salary so it is the gift that keeps giving.
How long do we continue to tolerate this? What constitutes "high pay" and when does it turn into embezzlement?