Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct information about the frequency of contract negotiations. We apologize for the mistake.

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — The Sioux City Community School District is once again in negotiations with unions representing teachers and other staff. This is the first time in five years that the contract is being reviewed.

A union rep presented the teachers first proposal last week. On Thursday, the district’s first offer was proposed to teachers. The offer from the school district includes a 3.25 percent increase to the salary schedule.

SCCSD Superintendent Dr. Rod Earleywine said the two sides are roughly five percent apart so far in negotiations.

Earleywine said the three percent increase in supplemental state aid was a factor in the school district’s proposal to the teachers.

While the two sides still have some more progress to make, he said it’s important to the district that they offer a competitive salary to retain teachers.

“We have to be competitive. we have to be competitive with the school districts that surround us in Iowa and the school districts that are right across our borders so we’re in a unique situation here in a Tri-state area,” said Superintendent Earleywine.

The new contract will run from 2023 to 2028. Board members will continue to work on the proposal awaiting a counteroffer from union leaders.

They will discuss language of the terms and also the pay increases.