North Orange County teachers move to strike

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Hundreds of La Habra elementary school teachers are likely to authorize a strike vote tonight over stalled contract talks with their school district.

Teachers and administrators at the La Habra City Elementary School District have negotiated for more than a year without agreeing on a labor contract. Now the administration is imposing a contract with a 2 percent salary cut and other reductions. That’s agitated the teachers union, said its president, Danette Brown.

"What one of our colleagues says is, 'We’ve agreed to be cut, we haven’t agreed to be bled to death,'" she said.

Brown wants a guarantee that the cuts will be temporary. La Habra City Schools superintendent Susan Belenardo said a strike by teachers would be unfortunate but the district is ready.

"We have done everything that we could around asking for compensation from our employees but at this point in time there is nowhere else to go," Belenardo said.

Earlier this year teachers at the other end of Orange County, at Capistrano Unified, walked off the job when their school district imposed permanent cuts. Teachers there accepted temporary cuts after the strike.