Consumer Price Index for School Districts

The Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission (WERC) recently released the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for one-year collective bargaining agreements beginning on July 1, 2020.

The CPI increase value for these agreements is 1.81%.

School and district leaders often look to CPI when planning for the upcoming budget cycle. If you are working with bargaining units who recertified in the November 2019 elections conducted by the WERC you are obligated to negotiate for base wage increases up to the CPI. Even in instances where you are not legally bound to this rate, you may wish to use CPI as a reference point when setting wages for public employees who are not subject to bargaining for base wages.

Since the passage of Act 10 in 2011, the CPI figure means different things for different districts, depending on variables such as: bargaining unit status, board policy, alternative compensation models, or other factors.

For your reference, the chart below includes a 10-year history of July 1st CPI rates.

History of July 1st CPI (2011-present)

July 1, 2020 1.81%
July 1, 2019 2.44%
July 1, 2018 2.13%
July 1, 2017 1.26%
July 1, 2016 0.12%
July 1, 2015 1.62%
July 1, 2014 1.46%
July 1, 2013 2.07%
July 1, 2012 3.16%
July 1,2011 1.64%

Chart data source: http://werc.wi.gov/doaroot/cpi-u_chart.htm

While the CPI is an indicator used to determine total base wage increases, it is important not to lose sight of the additional compensation provided to employees through quality employee benefits. If you would like assistance with articulating the value of your employee benefit offerings, please contact a member of your M3 team.

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