Knox County School Board approves new budget

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) The Knox County School Board has approved a final budget that is very similar to Dr. McIntyre's original proposal.

The new budget totals $432 million and allows for a 2.5% pay raise for all teachers. McIntyre had originally changed his proposal to offer a 2% raise for teachers, but after some debate, board members unanimously agreed upon a bigger increase.

"I think the board made a good case to say look, you know we want to stretch, we want to push, we want to make sure that we ask for the revenue that we think we need in order to really make some progress," Dr. McIntyre said.

Board member Karen Carson amended the original proposal, saying teachers deserve more than what they are being paid.

"Even though revenues are tight, it's really important that we make our pay competitive," Carson said.

The board has been discussing for several months on how to make Knox County more competitive with the rest of the state when it comes to teacher pay.

Board member Indya Kincannon seconded Carson's amendment, and even proposed a 3% raise. Other members advised that might be asking for too much, too soon, which prompted Kincannon to recant her amendment.

A breakdown of the numbers;

The general budget now totals $432 million. The board will now petition the Knox County Commission for $4.4 million to make up the difference for lost revenue from the state.

The board also voted on two other budget items at Monday night's evening. A unanimous vote passed a nearly $15 million Capital Improvement Plan. That includes upgrades and routine maintenance to school buildings, as well as improving security at every Knox County School.

It also approves a study on a new Hardin Valley and Gibbs Middle School to see what type of enrollment each would bring in, as well as analyzing student growth.

The third and final budget approved was the School Nutrition Fund, at a total of $27.5 million.

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