Hamilton County School teachers and fellow employees, who recently bemoaned the lack of raises in recent years, are set for a cash infusion.
County school officials said Wednesday afternoon they are recommending that school employees get a three percent pay increase that is retroactive to July.
In addition, the employees are to receive a one-percent bonus payment.
The raises must be approved by the school board. The presentation was made to five board members on the finance committee, and no one raised objections.
Christie Jordan, finance director, said over the past five years school employees have gotten pay increases totaling 4.93 percent. She said during that time inflation has gone up 10.73 percent.
The raise will bring a starting teacher's salary to $36,044.
An employee with a doctorate and 25 years experience will get $63,247.
Ms. Jordan said the increase will include $1.2 million from the state. She said the local portion will include $1 million from savings on utilities, $1 million from an unexpected number of teachers choosing to retire and being replaced by new teachers at lower pay, $800,000 from a reduction in the leave of absence account, a reduction in employer-paid retirement by $800,000 and a reduction in employer-paid Social Security due to insurance deductions which are pre-tax.
Another $1.1 million for the raise will come from the fund balance.
The $2.2 million for the one-percent bonus will also come from the fund balance.
It costs about $2.2 million to fund a one percent increase for school employees.
Ms. Jordan said the fund balance has been built to almost $30 million. It had dropped as low as $13 million in 2009.