Pontiac teachers sue district, facing health insurance cuts

Jul 11, 2013

Teachers in the struggling Pontiac School District are suing the district after being told their healthcare coverage could get axed.

The teachers who filed the lawsuit are claiming school officials took money designated for their healthcare premiums, and transferred it to the general fund in order to make the district’s finances look better.

Diana Dillaber Murray from The Oakland Press reported:

In fact, Michael Lee, attorney for the Pontiac Education Association, alleged in an Oakland County Circuit lawsuit filed this week that the reason school officials were putting the money into the general fund was to try and deceive Michigan officials as to the status of the state-approved plan to reduce the district’s deficit of $37.7 million.

"They have been taking money out of our checks and they haven’t been paying MESSA (Michigan Education Special Services Association)," said Aimee McKeever, president of the PEA.

As a result, the insurance carrier canceled coverage effective July 31.

So if left unresolved, the district’s teachers and their families would lose coverage by the end of the month.

School officials have yet to respond to the lawsuit.

The Pontiac district has been no stranger to financial woes. As we reported earlier this month, a six-member team was chosen by Gov. Rick Snyder to review the district’s finances.

An emergency manager could be appointed to oversee the district and its $38-million budget deficit.

- Melanie Kruvelis, Michigan Radio Newsroom