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Granite School District approves property tax hike for teacher raises

Aug 2, 2017, 9:06 AM

Janelle Baker hands out papers while her eighth-grade U.S. history class take a quiz at Valley Juni...

Janelle Baker hands out papers while her eighth-grade U.S. history class take a quiz at Valley Junior High in West Valley City. Photo credit: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

SALT LAKE COUNTY — An 11% pay raise is going to soon take effect in the Granite School District, after a unanimous, late night vote.

This spring and summer, several area school districts announced teacher pay increases in what some described as a salary “arms race” to help recruit and retain high-quality teachers. For residents who live within the boundaries of the Granite School District, which includes parts of central Salt Lake County including South Salt Lake, Millcreek, West Valley City, Taylorsville, Holladay and other cities, property taxes will increase about 12%.

For residents who live within the boundaries of the Granite School District, which includes parts of central Salt Lake County including South Salt Lake, Millcreek, West Valley City, Taylorsville, Holladay and other cities, property taxes will increase about 12%. That is about $93 per year on an average home. Some residents took issue with that.

“Many out here say teachers work hard, and it’s true, but we all work hard,” one man said at the public meeting. “In my plumbing business, I go down into trenches full of water for eight hours a day. See how hard that is.”

But some teachers weighed in with gratitude.

“I just want to say thank you. As a math teacher, I can stay in Granite now,” one teacher said. “I can stay in the school I love, that I’ve grown roots in.”

The starting salary for Granite teachers will increase to $41,000. The board of education says that increase means they now expect all teaching positions to be filled in time for the upcoming school year.

The board of education says that increase means they now expect all teaching positions to be filled in time for the upcoming school year. This summer, there were fewer than 200 applicants for 300 open teaching positions.

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Granite School District approves property tax hike for teacher raises