January 10, 2012



Regular Meeting – January 10, 2012




The regular meeting of the Board of Education of the Jackson County Intermediate School District was held on Tuesday, January 10, 2012, at the Kratz Education Center, 6700 Browns Lake Road, Jackson, Michigan.  President David Salsbury called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.  Board members present were: David Salsbury, President; Shirley Larson, Secretary; Douglas Schedeler, Treasurer. and Kevin Tuckey, Trustee.  Board members absent: Robert Moles, Vice President.


Meeting with the Board were Kevin Oxley, Superintendent; Richard Rendell, Director of Special Education; Susan Townsend, Director of Instruction; Roger Auwers, Finance Director; Catherine Brechtelsbauer, Human Resource Director and Legal Services; and Phyllis Stressman, Administrative Assistant.


STAFF AND VISITORS - List represents only those guests who signed-in:


Shawn McGillis, Clinton McGillis, Allisyn Miller, Amy Miller, Sharon Putman, Rose Lindo-Gleed, Patty Horning, Randy Jarchow, Joel Freehling, Shannon Degan, Roy Flaugher




A motion was made by Mrs. Larson to approve the minutes as presented from the December 13, 2011, regular and special meetings.  Mr. Tuckey supported the motion, which carried by roll call vote:

            Ayes)   Salsbury, Larson, Schedeler, Tuckey

            Nays)   None




Mr. Schedeler moved to accept the financial report as provided, with Mr. Tuckey seconding.  Roger Auwers and Mr. Oxley went on to speak about the negative budgetary impact of recent tax tribunal rulings.  The administration has been actively working towards learning more about the process and determining if there is a role for the District to play.  The motion carried by a roll call vote:

            Ayes)  Larson, Schedeler, Tuckey, Salsbury

            Nays)  None

Shannon Degan, ISD technology director, briefed the Board on ongoing discussions with surrounding ISD’s and Hillsdale local districts regarding subscribing to the technology consortium for services and student data systems.


Superintendent Oxley stated he and Mr. Auwers were planning to present the preliminary 2012-13 budget to local boards of education throughout a 6 week period between the end of February and mid-April.  The thought being the March workshop session would be unnecessary as the budget message would be better delivered and reach more school board members and administrators by a direct presentation.  Mr. Oxley stated the March 27th meeting originally scheduled for the purpose of the budget workshop with local districts would therefore be unnecessary.  Mr. Schedeler stated, while he felt the preliminary budget presentation to individual board is a good idea, he would still like to ensure the administration finds an opportunity to hold a workshop session with local district representatives as it is commonly felt at the local board level these sessions are valuable.




Representative Earl Poleski, Michigan 64th District, expressed appreciation to the Board and administration for the time and effort District administration has spent with legislators explaining the technology consortium and the many collaborative and shared service initiatives. He also thanked Superintendent Oxley for his constructive work with the JCEG group to shape education.




SCHOOL BOARD APPRECIATION - Volume 32, Report No. 59


Mr. Oxley expressed, on behalf of District staff and students, appreciation for the Board’s continued dedication and hard-work. Additional expressions of appreciation were presented by Jackson Area Career Center Principal Patty Horning and special education staff representative Teacher Assistant Karen Sullivan and Principal Sharon Putman. Videos were shared with the Board that depicted Career Center and special education students thanking the Board for their dedication and continued support.






Two requests for unpaid leaves of absences for education purposes were recommended:  Samuel Avis, through June 11, 2012; and Paul Swihart, May 11, 2012.  Mr. Tuckey made the motion to approve the leaves as presented with Mr. Schedeler supporting.

            Ayes) Larson, Schedeler, Tuckey, Salsbury

            Nays) None




AMENDMENT OF ELIGIBLE 457 PLAN – Volume 32, Report No. 61


It has been several years since the adoption of the Eligible 457 Plan.  Plante Moran found several areas where the original Plan document was out of date and no longer in compliance. The proposed changes address those areas and are recommended to the Board for adoption through the following resolution:


Proposed Resolution Related to Amendment of Eligible 457 Plan


The School District maintains an eligible 457 plan under Section 457(b) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) for the benefit of eligible employees (the "Plan"); and the Board has been advised that the Plan needs to be amended based upon certain changes made to the IRC that affect these plans, including the Pension Protection Act of 2006, the Heroes Earnings Assistance and Relief Tax Act of 2008, and the Worker, Retiree and Employer Recovery Act of 2008.


The Board has been presented with an Amendment to the Plan prepared by legal counsel.  The Board adopts the Amendment to the Plan as presented, and authorizes the Superintendent to execute the Amendment on behalf of the School District, and to take all actions deemed reasonable or appropriate in connection therewith. 


Mrs. Larson made the motion to adopt the resolution and Plan amendments as given, with Mr. Tuckey supporting:

            Ayes)  Tuckey, Salsbury, Larson, Schedeler

            Nays)  None




PROPERTY HOLDINGS – Volume 32, Report 62


The only change in the District’s property holdings is from the sale of the lot for the construction trades home.  Mr. Oxley stated that discussions are taking place with a developer of property on Browns Lake Road with the possibility of sometime in the future of entering into an agreement to purchase site ready lots in order to continue the building of the construction trade homes.  The Board will continue to be apprised of any progress in the area of land acquisition.




Mr. Auwers presented information related to a petition received from property owners, Clinton and RoseAnn McGillis, to transfer their property from Springport schools to Olivet school district in Calhoun County.  The McGillis’ daughter and grandchildren reside on the property in question and the children are currently attending Olivet school via School of Choice.  Mr. McGillis indicated he felt the tax dollars should be diverted to the district where his grandchildren attend; however, Shawn McGillis, his daughter and the concerned children’s mother, stated she is pursuing the transfer of property because Olivet schools would not provide transportation from her driveway.  Mr. Oxley explained that the primary concern locally is that children are able to freely attend any district their parents chose, and that is happening in this case; the McGillis children are attending their school of choice.  If Mr. and Mrs. McGillis wish to pursue the transfer of the property in order to see their tax dollars follow the children to the Olivet district, he encourages them to petition directly to the Michigan Department of Education.  The recommendation to the Board was to not take action on conducting a formal hearing on the matter locally and allows the McGillis petitioners to make their case for transfer directly to the State.  They were also encouraged to contact the Olivet superintendent and transportation director to determine what busing arrangement if any is available to them. 


The Board took no action on the matter.  Mr. Auwers advised the petitioners the information and instructions necessary in filing the petition directly with the state had been provided in an early mailing to Shawn McGillis.


Mr. Salsbury called for a short recess at 6:37 p.m. and reconvened at 6:50 p.m.




Technology Director Shannon Degan spoke to the need to upgrade the storage area network and stated when a solution and bid amounts are identified, the Board would be asked to approve the purchase.




Recent legislative changes significantly impacted the manner in which Michigan school employers and employees will address health insurance in the future.  Most Michigan school employees have enjoyed generous, comprehensive health insurance coverage which did not require covered individuals to develop very much knowledge to access the benefits.  With the advent of hard dollar or percentage caps on employer premium payment, it will be necessary for most employee groups to learn more about health insurance plan designs, insurance terminology and other options they may have for paying for health care services.

ISD staff members are participating in a committee to develop short education pieces on various health insurance related topics.  The committee includes union and insurance industry representatives, as well.  Most of these topics will be summarized in a podcast format so employees and their beneficiaries can view them at their convenience in the coming weeks.  They will be available by linking to the JCISD website. The committee members will also work with all local district administrations and unions to schedule Q&A style sessions throughout the county to explore the various topics more deeply and respond to specific questions from employees and their covered dependents.  We hope to complete these meetings in February, to keep them separate from the labor negotiations that will commence this spring.


Mr. Salsbury asked Ms. Brechtelsbauer to provide the Board with more information about the legalities involved with the negotiating process.




Mr. Tuckey commented about his having attended a Holiday event recently at the Torrant Center and observed first-hand the students using the Smartboards and iPads.




Mr. Salsbury adjourned the meeting at 7:11 p.m.