California Assemblyman Proposes Law To Limit Excessive Superintendent Compensation After Fiasco At Centinela School District

Submitted by Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

California Assembly SealPrompted by public outcry into Los Angeles area Centinela Valley School District’s extreme 2013 Superintendent compensation of $633,000.00 that included a $910,000.00 mortgage at half market rate and a million dollar fully funded whole life insurance policy California Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, who chairs the Assembly Budget Subcommittee on education Finance, said Assembly Bill 2710 would ensure greater transparency and accountability, in part by requiring all local school districts to post the employment contracts of their superintendents online.

Previous articles on the school district controversy may be read HERE and HERE.

Al stated “School districts should be spending taxpayer dollars on the kids, not on excessive administrator paychecks. While the vast majority of school administrators are honest, hardworking educators, I want to set up a system so that we can prevent abuse and ensure greater transparency and accountability in school districts throughout the state.”

Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi
Al Muratsuchi

“[T]he potential downside of giving more discretion to local school districts,” Al said of Fernandez’s compensation package. “We need to make sure we have the checks and balances in place so that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely.”

Specifically, Al’s bill has four main components. It would:

  • Require county offices of education to review local superintendents’ compensation on an annual basis.
  • Require a school district to post its superintendent’s employment contract and information on school district finances on its website.
  • Require school board members to receive training on ethics and governance.
  • Restrict school districts from providing low-interest home loans such as that provided by the Centinela Valley Union High School District to its superintendent.

It should come as no surprise legislation such as this would come about as a result of the excesses of this school district’s board members. It also shows that a greater need for transparency is always incumbent upon government in general to earn the trust of the public. But, it is also a sense of the shortcomings derived from voter apathy that might cause most of the transparency to fall into irrelevance. While Governor Brown has been successful in pushing to a more locally controlled school district administrations and operations, the actions of the Centinela Valley School Board show that state oversight of finances is going to remain paramount.


Daily Breeze
California Assembly Democratic Caucus / Al Muratsuchi Website

By Darren Smith
The views expressed in this posting are the author’s alone and not those of the blog, the host, or other weekend bloggers. As an open forum, weekend bloggers post independently without pre-approval or review. Content and any displays or art are solely their decision and responsibility.

10 thoughts on “California Assemblyman Proposes Law To Limit Excessive Superintendent Compensation After Fiasco At Centinela School District”

  1. “As long as people believe in absurdities they will continue to commit atrocities”
    — Voltaire

  2. ALL government (city, county, state and federal) should be vetted and their salaries posted for public perusing throughout the year on a website shown throughout the country.

  3. In Illinois, various districts publish the salaries of teachers and administrators already. Publishing the salary isn’t the problem here. The problem here is an out of control school board that may have been bought and sold by corporations.

  4. Darren, Keep hammering @ the education industry. From top to bottom it is about adults, not kids.

  5. All over this nation, right now, the FDIC is suing former bank officials for abuse and working the system that led to bank failures. It’s time the government go after public officials who work the system. Perhaps it has already begun, as we see now with holding prosecutors responsible for misconduct. Taxpayers deserve at least as much discretion as stock holders have — summary dismissal, at any time, for any reason, of any official. By forcing them constantly to look over their shoulders, wouldn’t it change their behavior?

  6. Its an interesting proposal. However, wouldn’t it make more sense to simply worry about the net present value of the compensation package? We also could look into other forms of civil service reform.

  7. I agree with Paine except Thomas Paine would put the figure at 50 thousand and I at five hundred dollars. I would require it to be printed on real paper and posted on the outhouse walls, all public bathrooms, local newspapers and on a bumper sticker on the cars owned by the public trough feeder. Then, on the internet, daily for one year, or for as long as schmucko is employed or is still getting paid. I note that California seems to make the news on the blog on a par with Florida. When the heck is this Centini County anyway? Is it close to the border?

  8. All public employees paid above 50k a year should have their pay shown on a site.

    Also we need to provide voters with recall options for most every elected official in the country as well as certain positions such as the superintendent. Then have it written in to those contracts that their contract will be void upon recall.

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