School Board takes first vote in favor of pay raise

School Board takes first vote in favor of pay raise
June 26 21:43 2017 Print This Article

The Charleston County School Board met Monday, June 26. The board had a first reading on Rev. Chis Collins’ motion to raise the pay for the consolidated board members to $14,300 and constituent board members to $7200 annually. The consolidated board currently earns $25 a meeting, and constituent board members are receiving $15 a meeting, a rate that has been frozen since 1967.

The pay proposal for consolidated and constituent board members totals $400,00 which is 0.08% of the budget. The school board members oversee a projected $481 Million operating budget and a $500 Million capital projects fund. This budget
is larger than that for Charleston County government, yet County Council members receive $21,000 per year.

The Charleston County School District has more than 100 employees who earn more than $100,000 a year. Board members Rev. Chris Collins, Rev. Eric Mack, Michael Miller, Chris Staubes, and Kevin Hollinshead voted for the pay raise proposal. Board members Cindy Coats and Priscilla Jeffrey abstained, and board members Kate Darby and Todd Garrett voted no. The proposal will get a second reading and vote at the board meeting on July 17.

In another school board matter, the board reversed a decision to locate a parking lot for buses from James Island Elementary on Grimball Road to the former W. Gresham Meggett High School property. James Island Elementary is in a primarily African American neighborhood. Community members have spoken out against the location of the bus lot at James Island Elementary because of the noise, oil leakage, and diesel fumes, which are particularly detrimental to those with breathing problems.

Board member Cindy Coats proposed to relocate the bus lot to the former Gresham Meggett High School property. This school has been set aside by the district for historical preservation as requested by the African-American community. Members of the community that attended the board meeting were unhappy with this decision as well. Rev. Sam Martin from St. James Presbyterian Church opposed the Meggett site and referred to the site selection as environmental racism.