Does the School Board have any idea what the economic reality is in Blount County?

The Blount County Director of Schools, Rob Britt, will now be the highest paid official on the Blount County government payroll, excluding the General Sessions Court Judges.  He will now make $124,954.83 while the Mayor, Ed Mitchell, makes $123,727.  Britt’s raise is 4.5%.

How many of you got a 4.5% raise this year?  How many of you make $100,000 or more?

From The Daily Times:

“He (Compton) stated that most certified employees received between $2,600 and $2,700.”

How many of you got a $2,600 raise this year?  How many of you have a gravy train health care plan for $25 or a family plan for $125-175?

Questions:
Do your public servants listen to you?
Are they serving your or their own interests and the interests of their friends and family?
Are you public servants aware that Blount County is the only county in the region where pay hasn’t kept up with the rate of inflation?
If they know, do they care?
If they care, how to they explain these pay raises when the taxpayers aren’t keeping up with the rate of inflation?
If they don’t care, what are you going to do about it?
If we can’t even clean up our own back yard, how are we ever going to clean the mess in Washington DC up?

Suggestions: The next time you have the opportunity to vote these people out, seize that opportunity.  Please get involved in the campaigns of good candidates.  If there is no good candidate in your district, pick up a petition and run for office.

7 thoughts on “Does the School Board have any idea what the economic reality is in Blount County?

  1. The County Commission needs to take the meat cleaver to the school budget next year. By law, their budget cannot be reduced but it should not be increased. Schools are taking too large of a percentage of the county revenue and the taxpayers are not receiving what we are paying for as far as a quality educational system.

  2. How many people in Blount County Government make over $100,000 excluding the judges or even including the judges? That is a lot of money, but comparatively speaking it is less than half what the Director of Schools in Knox County makes. LESS THAN HALF! I promise you this Dr. McIntyre can’t hold a candle to Rob Britt. He has no classroom or administrative experience and he just keeps adding to the Knox County Schools budget. Almost ALL principals in Knox County make over $100K. None in BCS do. Are the principals in Knox County that much better? BCS lost an Elementary Supervisor to Maryville City Schools and he makes $10,000 more to be an Elementary Principal?!? Is this a fiscally sound practice? BCS trains great leadership and loses them to surrounding school systems? The same is can be said for teachers and non-certified staff.

    No one here offers a viable solution. Here is one, Consolidated Government! However, the citizens in Alcoa and Maryville are against it. They are against it because of the “Haves” and “Have Nots.” If we consolidate then every school in Blount County might have new iPads and technology instead of the city schools. If we consolidate then every high school football field might be turf instead of grass. If we consolidate every police officer could make a living wage.

    Back to your point that Mr. Britt does not deserve this raise. He has cut more administrative staff and positions than his counterparts in the city. This was recently published in The Daily Times. Also, his percentage raise was roughly the same that the BOE approved for all classified and certified staff. He is a man of integrity and courage and wants what is best for ALL Blount County students including the ones who live in the city of Maryville and Alcoa.

    • Sherry,
      The Blount County payrolls for the past several years are available in the top right hand corner of this website.

      Several people have talked about consolidating schools but I’ve not seen anyone campaign on that or take any formal action to make that happen. If you think it’s a good idea, why don’t you get the ball rolling.

      Your argument for Britt being the highest paid person except for the GS judges is that he isn’t Dr. McIntyre. OK, he’s not Dr. McIntyre.

      Any of us could pick one bad example to compare Blount County to. Regarding his salary that is more than double, Knox County only has one school system and the population that is more than double. However, I certainly don’t support Dr. McIntyre’s salary.

      Regarding the cuts and pay it was reported that the number of employees is the same at 37. The pay is down slightly. That tells me that we may have been overpaying in the past. Furthermore, the schools now have a full time PR person. What a waste when you have nearly a $2M Central Office payroll. The sister of a commissioner got a nice raise this year.

      Regarding the principal who left, the cities pay a lot more in taxes so they can afford to pay more. However, there were still plenty of people eager to take that job because it’s far more than you can make at most jobs in the private sector of Blount County. Pay in Blount County isn’t keeping up with the rate of inflation.

      “He is a man of integrity and courage and wants what is best for ALL Blount County students including the ones who live in the city of Maryville and Alcoa.”

      A man of integrity making $119K off the struggling taxpayers, with pay that isn’t keeping up with the rate of inflation, would tell the school board that he already makes more than double what 50%+ of the households live on in Blount County. At $125K he will be making 2.7 times the median household income in Blount County. I don’t understand why people defend bureaucrats with words like “courage”, “leadership”, “boldness”, “integrity” etc. when they make far more than the people that they are suppose to serve.

  3. “By law, their budget cannot be reduced but it should not be increased.”

    This also needs to be changed. It is ridiculous that systems like Blount keep getting more money even when the student population has dropped.

    86% going to salaries….and increasing.

  4. This was the best I could do under short notice for TN Director of Schools Salaries.

    http://teateachers.org/director-schools-salaries-system

    It is dated but allows for a comparison. Mr. Britt is not a bureaucrat. He is an educator in every sense of the word. We have had bureaucrats in that position in the past but for the most part there have been excellent Superintendents in the County and City(s).

    One thing that jumped out at me about those salaries was that the Director of Loudon County Schools made more than Blount. I didn’t spend a lot of time analyzing but are the tax payers in Loudon County not struggling like the ones in Blount? Perhaps the citizenry of Loudon County values education more than Blount and thus is willing to pay a higher more competitive salary to attract someone who is a competent educator and leader.

    I don’t think the leadership in Blount County in any department is over compensated. I think you must pay a competitive wage to acquire quality people.

    “Restore” your argument about the cities paying higher/more taxes is true, but if we did go to a consolidated government would you be willing to pay one Superintendent $300K to run one school system? I don’t think you would nor do I think that salary is warranted.

    However, I do think the salaries of ALL the Directors in Blount County is fair for the job, responsibility, accountability and decisions that have to be made for our children.

    I appreciate your arguments to the contrary, but respectfully disagree.

    • “… go to a consolidated government …”

      If’n somebody wanted to run against Mayor Ed, that sure would be one heckuva platform, most folks that live in the county that even bother to vote, would & should be for 100%!

      I like your idea.

    • “I don’t think the leadership in Blount County in any department is over compensated. I think you must pay a competitive wage to acquire quality people.”

      The officeholder positions are not competitive in the market. There is no other Register of Deeds, Clerk of Court, etc. to compete with. If someone wants to be the Register of Deeds of another county they have to move to that county and run for that office where it is also the only position. The state mandates the minimum pay for office holders and all the elected officeholders are paid far more than the median household income.

      Have you looked at the pay of all leadership in the county? If not, how can you make that statement?

      Did you look at the economic information on the link that I gave you? If so, you will see that Blount County is the only county in the region where pay isn’t keeping up with the rate of inflation (a great testament to the IDB, the Blount Partnership, Bryan Daniels and Mayor Ed Mitchell) and tied for the highest drop in median household income. That means households in Blount County are living on less than before yet people in government keep getting raises that are far more than people in the private sector are getting.

      The citizens of Loudon County probably are struggling. At least their pay is keeping up with the rate of inflation, although that doesn’t mean that they have a robust economy. Blount County pay isn’t even keeping up with the rate of inflation yet raises are being dolled out right and left. People living on pay that isn’t keeping up with the rate of inflation can’t afford raises for people who are already making more than they are.

      You gave the chart of the pay for the Director of Schools. At the top of the list is Memphis City Schools. If high pay (competitive as you call it) attracts the best people as you and Tom Stinnett like to say then Memphis City Schools should have been one of, if not the top, school districts in Tennessee. Instead, guess what happened?

      There is no way that I would support a $300,000 salary. The student population wouldn’t double if the schools were consolidated but you are suggesting that the pay should more than double. $300,000 would be over 6 times the median household income.

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