Shelby Co. Commission committee approves $20K pay raise for scho - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Shelby Co. Commission committee approves $20K pay raise for school board

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The proposal cleared its first Shelby County Commission hurdle. The proposal cleared its first Shelby County Commission hurdle.

(WMC-TV) - A $20,000 pay raise for the Shelby County Schools Board District is looking more likely Wednesday. The proposal cleared its first Shelby County Commission hurdle.

Shelby County Commissioners had some pretty heated conversation about the school board. Some commissioners, who make way more than the school board, think a raise is a bad idea, but it still passed in committee.

"Be real careful about whose educating your babies. You got your fat cats, your billionaires who don't have any expertise," said commissioner Henri Brooks.

Commissioners debated over whether to give the new seven-member board a $20,000 raise, which would be from $4,200 to $25,000 a year.

Brooks voted "yes" for the raise saying some people who are qualified cannot run for a board seat because the pay is too low.

Commissioner Mike Ritz proposed the increase.

"I think generally speaking, all of you are happy with the school board now," he said.

Commissioner Terry Roland voted "no."

"Not giving some bureaucrat more money for an elected position. If he wants it, he'll run for it ... Or she. If they don't, they won't," said Roland.

Commissioners and Memphis City Council members make close to $30,000 a year. Something commissioner Steve Mulroy, who is in favor of the raise, pointed out.

"They do work hard and we do want to attract people of quality to give up their time to be on the school board," said Mulroy.

Commissioner Chris Thomas said he cannot support it.

"It sends a horrible message to the teachers who lost their jobs," he said.

The pay raise proposal passed in committee Wednesday. It will now go to the full commission for its next vote. The Shelby County School board did not ask for a pay raise.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved. 

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