Lawmakers Approve Education Budget with 4% Pay Raise

Alabama lawmakers have given final approval to an education trust fund budget that includes a 4% pay increase for K-12 teachers and other public school employees.

Lawmakers gave final approval to the spending plan for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. The bill now goes to Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk.

Ivey released the following statement, following the Legislature’s action:

“Once again, we are making historic progress with Alabama’s education system. I am proud that this year’s 7.1 billion-dollar Education Trust Fund will be the largest investment in education in our state’s history. From expanding our First-Class Pre-K program to increasing access to high-speed internet, these funds are going to enable us to provide more learning opportunities for our youth. Additionally, I am very pleased that the Legislature supported my recommendation to give our teachers a much-deserved four percent pay raise for their hard work and dedication,” she said in a statement.

The budget, which is fueled by sales and income taxes, has just now rebounded past pre-recession levels of 2008. The $7.1 billion education trust fund budget would be the largest in state history although it still lags 2008 levels when adjusted for inflation.

The budget steers an additional $26.8 million to the state’s prekindergarten program. It will also add about 250 teachers in grades four through six as part of an effort to reduce classroom sizes.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Categories: Montgomery Metro, News, Statewide