MADISON HEIGHTS, Mich. - Teachers in the Madison schools agreed to a one-year contract with a pay freeze and changes in health insurance, according to the Royal Oak Daily Tribune.

The district also will lower the amount it contributes monthly to employee health insurance while eliminating a cash-stipend for those who opt out of the union-backed Michigan Education Special Services Association, the Daily Tribune reported. MESSA is a third-party administrator affiliated with the Michigan Education Association that outsources insurance underwriting to Blue Cross Blue Shield, then resells policies to school districts.

The changes will save the district about $246,000, according to the Daily Tribune.

Royal Oak Daily Tribune, "Madison teachers ratify one-year contract in time for school," Aug. 29, 2008

Mackinac Center for Public Policy, "How MESSA and the MEA Work," Feb. 2, 2008