BELTON, Texas — Belton Independent School District unanimously approved pay raises averaging 6.5% for its teachers Monday night, thanks to the passage of House Bill 3, the teacher pay raise bill.

The raises total about $4.8 million-- or a little more than $1 million more than the new law requires, according to superintendent Susan Kincannon. 

The law requires 75% of the total compensation increase go to teachers, nurses, librarians and counselors. The remaining 25% goes to employees other than administrators.

Kincannon said raises will range from $3,200 up to $5,200.

Starting teachers' salaries were also brought up to $50,200, an increase of $2,900.

"We're also recommending this evening a 6% midpoint increase for our paraprofessionals which also includes our teachers' aides and auxiliary employees," Kincannon said.

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The district is also planning to increase its monthly health insurance contribution by $25.

Kincannon said the district is already seeing the benefits of H.B. 3.

"Under the House Bill 3 passage, the Belton ISD tax rate will be reduced to a little over $1.06."

The next step in fully implementing H.B. 3 is reducing the district's tax rate.

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