Newport Voters to Mull Teacher Pay Raises

Newport — Voters will have the opportunity to discuss teacher pay increases at the School Board deliberative session as part of the 15 articles on the annual school warrant.

In addition to the raises that were recently negotiated with the teacher’s union, voters will also be able to weigh in on a proposed $17.5 million budget, up $143,000 from this year.

Article 3 for $60,420 covers the second half of a step increase for teachers approved by voters last March and Article 4, for $98,183, would “restore equitable salary steps as stated in previous contracts.” Finally, article 5 will ask voters to approve a negotiated two-year contract with the first year of teacher raises costing $95,113 and the second year, $166,108.

A three-year agreement with support staff is proposed in article 7, with the first year costing $61,970.

If either article 5 or 7 are defeated, the School Board is seeking approval under articles 6 and 8 to reconsider them.

If approved, articles 6 and 8 would allow the board the option of holding a special meeting without having to ask for court permission to specifically address either article 5 or 7, or both.

Articles 11, 12 and 13 proposed withdrawing various amounts under capital reserve funds for a new bus, a new telecommunications system enhanced security at the district’s three schools and repairs to the high school track and football field.

The last two articles would grant the School Board the authority to spend money from two capital reserve funds without asking for voter approval at the annual school district meeting.

Tuesday’s deliberative session begins at 6 p.m. in the high school gymnasium.

— Patrick O’Grady