NJ Superintendent Salary Caps

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Brian Osborne, highly-regarded superintendent of South Orange-Maplewood Schools, is moving on to New Rochelle. NJ Spotlight reports today on Senate Bill 1987, sponsored by Teresa Ruiz (Essex) that would repeal the superintendent salary caps that many blame on departures like Osborne’s. (I looked at the bill yesterday at WHYY’s Newsworks.)

From Spotlight:

Superintendents are still leaving, and the salary caps are certainly still a contributing factor. The latest to make a move to a neighboring state where there are no caps is Brian Osborne, who announced this week that he is leaving as superintendent in South Orange-Maplewood to lead the public schools in New Rochelle, NY

Osborne currently makes $208,170 in South Orange-Maplewood (Essex); his contract predates the superintendent salary caps that went into effect in 2011, via DOE regulations and at the behest of the Christie Administration. Under the cap salary schedule, Osborne’s new contract would top out  at $175,500. While details of Osborne’s contract with New Rochelle haven’t been released, his predecessor made $279,172, more than $100K over NJ’s cap. Not to mention the additional $70K in “other compensation.”

Last year Osborne turned down an equally lucrative position in Anne Arbor, Michigan. Then again, New Rochelle is only 38 miles from South Orange. 

Ruiz’s bill has lots of support, including Sen. Pres. Steve Sweeney. Gov. Christie, however, continues to be a strong advocate for the caps; whether he’ll fold on this one is anyone’s guess but the odds are likely low.

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