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Nampa trustees to consider paying their part-time clerk $72,000 a year

Nampa School District
Posted at 4:51 PM, Feb 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-17 18:51:16-05

This article was originally published by Kyle Pfannenstiel in Idaho Ed News.

The Nampa School District’s newly hired board clerk is asking trustees to pay her $50 an hour, double the typical hourly rate for board clerks in Idaho, as well as provide other perks, according to a contract she presented to the board Monday.

Trustees approved nominating independent contractor Krissy LaMont as their clerk in a 4-1 vote at their Jan. 18 meeting. The nomination was approved just minutes after three newly elected trustees were sworn in during their first annual meeting. The clerk job was not posted for others to apply. The board’s most senior trustee, Mandy Simpson, voted against LaMont’s nomination, expressing concern about bringing on a hand-selected candidate.

LaMont has since served as Nampa’s board clerk in at least two board meeting. Trustees formally hired her as an independent contractor on Jan. 27, but they did not approve a contract. It’s unclear what she is being paid for her past month of employment.

At Nampa’s Feb. 14 meeting, LaMont introduced her proposed contract to trustees during a seven-minute presentation. Her contract requests $50 an hour for 120 hours a month and $100 an hour if more work is required. She would earn at least $72,000 a year for part-time employment, which is 44% more than Nampa’s average teacher salary of $49,926.

Her contract also would require the district to provide equipment and supplies, office space in the district office, professional development, bond and reimbursement for expenses. Click here to see the proposal.

LaMont asked trustees to wait until a Feb. 28 meeting to take action on her contract because it was not posted publicly.

“I nominated Krissy Lamont because she is qualified for the job,” said trustee Brook Taylor in a January email to EdNews. “Not only does she possess all of the skills and experience as outlined by the position as presented by our district, she also specializes in crisis management, conflict resolution and leadership training, which I believe is a set of skills that any board can benefit from.”

LaMont worked for the Idaho School Boards Association for nearly eight years as a board trainer and director of leadership development and member services, and they parted ways in September.

“How blessed is Nampa that our Clerk is the Clerk that trains all other clerks!” Taylor wrote to EdNews on Wednesday.

In 2021, LaMont faced charges for driving under the influence and petty theft, both misdemeanors, online court records show. LaMont pleaded guilty in October to the DUI and is scheduled for a jury trial on the petty theft charge on April 25. She also was arrested and charged Oct. 6 for misdemeanor failure to appear in connection to the petty theft charge, according to court records.

LaMont wrote in a Facebook message on Wednesday that she is working on a response to EdNews’s request for comment.

LaMont’s contract negotiations follow heavy turnover in Nampa leadership. Veteran trustee Mike Kipp resigned Jan. 31. Days later, then-superintendent Paula Kellerer resigned,citing differences with the board. The resignations followed upheaval on the board. Three new trustees — Taylor, Jeff Kirkman and Tracy Pearson — were elected in November and banded together in January to elect Kirkman as chair and Pearson as vice chair on 3-2 votes. Simpson and Kipp voted against the leadership change.

The average hourly pay for Idaho school board clerks is $25.61, and they work around 20 hours a week, according to a report by the State Department of Education. Clerks in larger districts are often paid more. In Idaho’s largest district, West Ada, the clerk makes $36.19 an hour, and in Boise, Idaho’s second largest district, the clerk makes $32.63 an hour. Nampa is Idaho’s third largest school district.

Nampa’s previous clerk was a school district employee who received an annual stipend of $8,568 for clerk duties. District spokesperson Kathleen Tuck said the clerk worked about 10 hours a week, so averaged about $17 an hour.

LaMont’s contract asks for 120 hours a month, which works out to 30 hours a week. Nampa trustees discussed LaMont working 10 hours a week, but she said at the Feb. 14 meeting, “10 hours a week is completely unreasonable in the amount of things that need to be done.”

LaMont runs an LLC named 3B: Building Better Boards, which was registered with the state on Oct. 28.

LaMont also is the interim board clerk for the North Gem School District, according to that district’s website. She is being paid $4,500 to serve in the position from January to June 30, 2022, according to minutes from a Jan. 6 meeting. North Gem, a small district in East Idaho, does not have a contract with LaMont, said district Interim Business Manager Candie Massey.

Idaho EdNews data analyst Randy Schrader contributed to this report.