The man in charge of the largest employer in the Victor Valley says he's getting paid too much.

At Monday night's meeting of the Hesperia Unified School District school board, Superintendent Mark McKinney announced that he had not done enough to "share the pain" when salary and benefits were cut last year for district employees.

"I'm asking the board to open up negotiations on my contract and looking at some sort of salary/compensation reduction," McKinney said Tuesday. "Do furlough days or whatever we can do together. ... I need to set the example."

Last year, HUSD management except for McKinney took eight furlough days. As district officials begin consideration of next year's budget, he says it's time to even things up.

"We're going to face another tough financial year. I want to get out ahead of it," McKinney said. "I want to take the lead and put forth those sacrifices we all need to make."

If legislators and voters don't go for Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal to extend expiring taxes, the district is potentially looking at losing $349 per student. As of Jan. 10, the district had 21,379 enrolled. If the cuts were implemented today, they would mean a loss of $7.4 million to the district.

"We are looking at some very difficult financial times."

What sort of cuts McKinney might take won't be decided on until the board has had a chance to take up the issue in future meetings.

"Certainly the eight furlough days," he said. "If it needs to be more than that, then I need to step out and take the lead."

According to his contract, McKinney's salary for the 2010-2011 school year is $156,260.

The next regular meeting of the HUSD school board will be held on Feb. 14 at 6 p.m. in the HUSD Educational Support Center Annex, 15576 Main Street.

Beau Yarbrough can be reached at 760-956-7108 or at beau@hesperiastar.com. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Hesperia.Star.

Local superintendent salaries, 2010-2011 school year

Adelanto Elementary, $171,286
Apple Valley Unified, $161,828
Helendale Elementary, $107,500
Hesperia Unified, $156,260
Lucerne Valley Unified, $105,583
Oro Grande Elementary, $122,000
Rim of the World, $186,000
Snowline Joint Unified, $167,116
Victor Elementary, $153,771
Victor Valley Union High, $175,000