KINGSPORT — Kingsport teachers and other school system employees will get a full 2.5 percent raise thanks to the Sullivan County Commission’s property tax rate increase and the city school board.
The Kingsport Board of Education voted 5-0 Thursday night to go back to the 2.5 percent cost-ofliving raises for 2012-13. The board had proposed that earlier in the year but cut back to 2 percent because the Kingsport Board of Mayor and Aldermen declined to give the system as much additional funding as it requested.
The 20 cent increase in the county property tax rate — approved in a called commission meeting Monday night in Blountville — included nine cents for schools. When split among the county, Kingsport and Bristol, Tenn., school systems proportionate to the number of students in each system, the Kingsport system will get just more than $900,000 from the increase .
Going to 2 percent to 2.5 percent raises will cost an estimated $204,500. Superintendent Lyle Ailshie and Finance Director David Frye said going ahead and approving the 2.5 percent will mean updating pay systemwide only once, not twice, for the school year.
Frye said employees last year got a 2 percent raise. Before that, they got nothing for two years running, 1 percent the year before that, and 4 percent the year before that.
Compared with other systems, Ailshie said city teachers on average dropped from the sixth highest to the eighth over four years, to 2011-12. That is looking at a projected lifetime earnings over a 30-year teaching career.
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