Momentum builds for state-funded teacher raises
From the Buzz:
A brightening budget picture could mean salary hikes for tens of thousands of teachers and state employees if Senate President Don Gaetz gets his way.
“I think that teachers are some government workers who deserve to have better compensation,” Gaetz, R-Niceville, said. “But I know corrections officers, I know highway patrolmen…. who deserve a raise. And six years is a long time to wait.”
Gov. Rick Scott has announced support for across-the-board pay hikes for Florida teachers, but the hard part will be making the numbers work in an uncertain budgeting environment.
Gaetz said he was not familiar with the details of Scott’s teacher pay raise, but pointed out a still-tight budget may force Scott to “reduce funding for some of his other priorities in order to fund this most recent priority.”
That could mean Scott’s push for lower business taxes and more cash for economic incentives could be tempered by the plan to provide teachers raises.
Early estimates of the pay raise come in at about $480 million, Scott said.