There was much debate the other week over the $265,000 salary (plus roughly $23,000 in benefits) that Oakland’s new superintendent, Tony Smith, negotiated for himself in the midst of a horrifying state budget crisis.
But Oakland’s state trustee, Vince Matthews — who will have veto power over the fiscal decisions of the newly re-empowered board — isn’t too far behind. Matthews’ former role as state administrator might have been scaled back this week, after the transition to local control, but his pay hasn’t changed: It’s still $240,000 a year, plus benefits.
Hilary McLean, the press secretary for State Superintendent Jack O’Connell (Matthews’ boss), said Matthews’ contract includes a 60-day provision that prevents any immediate salary changes. She said Matthews will initially work full-time in OUSD; as his time commitment lessens, she said, it’s possible that his compensation will be “adjusted.”
“It’s still, certainly, a huge responsibility,” McLean said.
Of course, if Matthews finds another job outside OUSD, a different pay rate could be negotiated with the next hire.
The Last Act: On Monday, before relinquishing his powers as state administrator, Matthews disbursed the controversial $450,000 to charter schools, per O’Connell’s orders. The school board dropped the lawsuit they had filed against O’Connell in an attempt to keep the money.