School Bd. votes to pay its members $700/mo.

The Fairfield County School Board passed first reading last week with a 5-1 vote, with one member abstaining, to provide its members with compensation of $700 per member per meeting. The school board chair would receive an extra $50 per meeting under the proposal.

Board member William Frick proposed the compensation to the board members saying it was a long time coming.

In South Carolina, school boards were, until recently, dependent on the legislature to decide whether they should be compensated for their board work.

The move comes after the board formed a compensation committee last year and presented a school board compensation bill to the legislature. That bill, after remaining in limbo for some time, was passed in both the house and senate last winter, but promptly vetoed by Governor McMaster.

The Governor’s veto has since been overridden by the legislature giving way for school boards in the state to decide upon and set their own salaries.

Frick said that, with compensation, the board members would no longer be reimbursed for district travel or for travel to district athletic events.

“Why are we doing this?” he asked.

“Because it is simply fair, and because we have not always had the fiscal stability in this district that we have now,” he said.

“We have had a surplus for several years now. Appropriate compensation for board members feeds in to that stability.”

“Where will the money come from?” he asked.

“This compensation for the board is not dependant on any revenue in existence such as the nuclear plant. No additional funds are needed for us to do this. It will come out of our budget,” Frick said.

“It is already in our $38 million budget. It will come out of money already allocated for the board. It is a reallocation of funds from advertising ex

penses, some travel expenses, legal funds, etc. This compensation will not add to the budget,” he said.

“Richland School District 1 board members get $640. Richland District 2 gets $800. Newberry gets $640 and Lancaster gets $700,” he told the board.

In further comparisons to other boards with budgets in the range of the school districts, Frick said County Council members get $15,000 a year.

“We receive $35 per meeting,” he said. “We want to maintain quality leadership and it takes compensation to do that. If you don’t pay people, they’ll go someplace else.”

 

Comments

  1. Marcus Polk says

    Is this $700 per month as the headline reads or $700 per meeting? How many students are there in the Richland School Districts or Newberry’s or Lancaster’s? How many in Fairfield’s? Was a comparison made or is this just an attempt to be “fair” as Mr. Frick states? How much thought was put into this? Was any public discussion held prior to the vote on the first reading? And, Mr. Frick, you say if you don’t pay people, they’ll go someplace else – how does this include Board members?

  2. Money want buy quality board members. What happened to community service? $ only buys people who are concerned about their on welfare and not the community.

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