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LA JOYA – At this week’s La Joya Independent School District board meeting, board members voted to give employees a choice of whether they want to be paid bi-weekly or monthly.

The district had conducted a survey where 1,356 employees casted their votes. Of those votes, 625 (46 percent) employees preferred to be paid on a monthly basis and 731 (54 percent) employees preferred to be paid on a bi-weekly basis. Professional and para-professional employees were surveyed.

Administration recommended giving the option to the employees instead of making it one or the other. The change will not go into effect until the next contract year, 2013-2014. Employees will be able to update their choice every contract year as well, if they decide to change their option.

Board Vice-President Espie Ochoa told administration they need to make sure all employees know it is an option and not something their supervisors will be dictating to them.

Current employees will be given an opportunity to make a selection before the end of the 2012-2013 contract year. During the month of May, current employees will receive a form to select the payment option they wish to receive. The form can also be found online.

If an employee decides to get paid monthly, he will receive 12 equal payments. Employees who decide to get paid bi-weekly will receive 26 equal payments.

In other business, the board approved the purchase of five new police vehicles for the LJISD Police Department. Many of the current vehicles have high mileage and are becoming costly to repair and maintain, as well as being unavailable for use when they are in the repair shop. The board was told that at any given time, there is a minimum of two vehicles in the repair shop, causing a shortage of vehicles and affecting officer response time to incidents.

The board gave approval for three Ford sedans, two Ford Expeditions and police equipment for the five vehicles. The total cost is $156,721.

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