RICHMOND (WRIC) - New school buses and teacher raises could be in the future for Richmond schools.
For the first time in a while, the proposed Richmond schools budget doesn't look so bleak. Instead of talking about closing down schools, they're talking about increasing funding in a number of areas.
Just a few weeks after Dr. Dana Bedden was sworn in as new superintendent, he already as budget proposed that's modest compared to recent years.
School Board member Kim Gray is happy with a lot of the $261 million budget that includes a three percent raise for teachers and faculty.
"It's a small step, but a step in the right direction," she says "Their health care has gone up. Their dental care gone away. It's a small thing we can do."
Thanks to $8 million in increased state revenue for next year - as well as some leftover money - school leaders have more to work with than usual.
"We have about $10 million increase in revenues for next year."
Also included are plans to replace 13 school busses that ideally should've been replaced several years ago, which will actually save money in the end.
"It's very costly to run old school busses with the breakdowns and the fuel usage," Gray says. "It's such an inefficient way to run our transportation. "
Despite the extra funding, there is still a $3 million budget gap due to some extra things that have come up - mostly health care. The school board hopes the city will be able to cover that.
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