Hamilton County school board members unanimously approved a contract for the man they chose as their next superintendent, Dr. Bryan Johnson. 

Now, they just need Johnson's signature.

"Congratulations, you have a new superintendent," says Scott Bennett, attorney for the Hamilton County Department of Education.

It's been nearly a month since the Hamilton County school board picked Dr. Johnson to lead the district and now they're one step closer to sealing the deal after finalizing his contract. 

"Been a lot of hours put into it trying to meet the middle and meet everyone's needs with the county and the new director," board chairman, Steve Highlander says. 

Among the hot topics was Johnson's salary. At $197,500, Johnson is being offered a relatively low salary compared to past superintendents. But, the contract says if Johnson hits certain benchmarks, he could earn more money.

Board member Rhonda Thurman isn't sure those benchmarks are attainable.

"I hope that doesn't look bad for him if he doesn't make these benchmarks because these benchmarks are pretty high," board member, Rhonda Thurman says. "I know we put them on there for a reason because that's where we want to be." 

Board member Karitsa Jones says she's optimistic that Johnson can reach those goals. 

"He believes he can so he probably will and I know that we have aspiring teachers and administrators in our system that can support him to do that," Jones says.

In an effort to avoid a potential buyout, the four-year deal prevents board members from extending Johnson's contract until the end of his third year.

Johnson's performance will be evaluated by board members each year, and he will have the right to respond. It's a way for everyone involved to identify problems and work toward solutions. 

The contract calls for Dr. Johnson to begin work on Monday, July 17. 

We're told Johnson will try to be in place by Monday, but he could be delayed as he leaves his current job with the Clarksville-Montgomery County School District. 

Here is the entire contract approved by the Hamilton County Department of Education: