Districts considering giving employees a one-time payment can use TASB resources to help ensure practices are compliant and practical.
Board members and district leaders typically want to reward employees each year with additional compensation to recognize their employees’ service to the organization. Methods used include an increase of annual salary, a one-time bonus provided for in advance, or additional pay for additional duties. This year, many districts are wanting to reward teachers for their extraordinary effort providing instruction and support to students during a difficult time.
Districts are free to adopt the increase method that best meets their needs but also must consider various compliance issues, including the constitutional prohibition on gifts of public funds and contract laws that prohibit increasing pay once work on the contract has begun.
Practical guidance is available to HR Services members in the HR Library topic One-Time Payments to District Employees. Additional information is available in the TASB School Law eSource paper, Mid-Year Pay Increases of School District Employees. This memo provides an overview of legal issues relating to increasing employee compensation, including the constitutional restrictions on gifts of public funds.
Districts with questions about local compensation plans can contact HR Services at email@example.com. Legal questions may be directed to TASB Legal Services at 800.580.5345.
April Mabry oversees HR Services training services, member library products, and the HRX newsletter. She has provided HR training and guidance to Texas public schools since 1991. Mabry was a classroom teacher for 11 years in Texas and Michigan.
Mabry has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Michigan and certification as a professional in human resources (PHR) and is a SHRM-CP.
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