The SAISD Board approved next year’s budget with conditional salaries due to the special called session of the Texas Legislature. The Governor has included items on the call for the session that could impact salaries. One item on the special session agenda, for example, is a $1000 pay increase for teachers. However, the state would not provide the funding for this increase if it passes meaning districts would have to find that money out of their current funding.
The Board conditionally approved the continuation of the $500 longevity stipend, a $13/hour minimum wage (up from the current $12/hour), and anywhere between a 0% and 2% salary increase (on the midpoint). SAISD’s fiscal year is July 1-June 30. Therefore, the Board must adopt a budget by June 30. The special session will not begin until July 18 so the Board has to adopt a budget without knowing what will happen during the special session.
According to the attorneys for the district, if the Board were to not include something conditional in the budget when approved, they cannot come back later and decide to give an increase. Once the budget has been approved, adding salary increases for contract employees would be considered “gifting,” which is not legal under the state constitution.