UPDATE: Hamilton County Schools Superintendent holding meetings about potential tax hike
Hamilton County School Superintendent Rick Smith is holding meetings across Hamilton County trying to gain support for a tax hike.
Wednesday, April 8th 2015, 6:06 pm EDT by
Wednesday, April 22nd 2015, 5:09 am EDT
The debate over the proposed Hamilton County School budget is heating up. Hamilton County Superintendent Rick Smith is holding meetings throughout the county, asking for more money for the school system.
In the meantime, County Commissioner Tim Boyd released a list of salaries of top school officials, many of whom earn more than 100,000 dollars a year. He said it was an effort to shed light on school spending. School board members Donna Horn and Jonathan Welch have criticized the timing of the release, saying boyd's figures don't tell the whole story. They say boyd's actions are reckless.
As for Rick Smith, he met with East Ridge area residents Tuesday night at East Ridge Middle School.
Ann Law, Hamilton County resident, "Every issue we have in Chattanooga, when we start talking about the issues, it's always about education, this is a chance to get on board with this incredible vision, and move every child forward."
The next meeting will he held Thursday at Hixson High. Smith encourages people with opinions on both sides of to attend.
Hamilton County School Superintendent Rick Smith told a hostile crowd Thursday night, he's "not advocating a tax increase", he's 'advocating for kids"
It was a small crowd at the second meeting to try to gain support for the 44-cent tax hike. It would add more than 33-million dollars to the school budget. That would cost about 100-dollars more a year for a 100-thousand dollar home.
Hamilton County Schools Superintendent Rick Smith is holding his second meeting Thursday trying to gain support for a tax hike.
He's talking to residents in all 9 districts over the next few weeks.
Smith wants to increase the current property tax rate by 40-cents to add more than 33-million dollars to the school budget.
That would be about 100-dollars more a year for a 100-thousand dollar home.
Smith says he needs the money for a 5-percent pay raise for teachers and additional arts and foreign language classes to more elementary schools.
Smith presents his budget proposal to County Commissioners next month.
Thursday's meeting will take place at 7:00 pm at John A. Patten Rec Center in Lookout Valley.
Here is a list of the other meetings scheduled:
- Mon. April 20: Signal Mtn. Middle/High 6:00 p.m.
- Tues. April 21: East Ridge High 6:30 p.m.
- Thur. April 23: Hixson High 6:30 p.m.
- Tues. April 28: Brainerd High 6:00 p.m.
- Thur. April 30: Red Bank Middle 6:00 p.m.
- Mon. May 4: Orchard Knob Elem. 6:00 p.m.
- Tues. May 5: Howard High 6:30 p.m.
- Tues. May 12: Soddy- Daisy High 6:00 p.m.