Questions surrounding Nashville teacher pay raise rise

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The boom of Nashville has been well documented. But the steady bleeding of cash is a surprise to some city leaders and the state.

Justin P. Wilson, Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury, went before some members of Metro Council last week amidst the current budget deficit.

“We want Nashville to be healthy, financially healthy,” he said. “It’s important for the state of Tennessee, it’s important for Nashville.”

Should issues persist, the state could soon step in.

“The state does have the authority to step in and control how you spend your money,” added Wilson. “But none of us want to see that happen.”

For months, budget talks centered largely around teacher pay.

Former Mayor David Briley, facing an election, announced in July newly found funds which would pay for an additional three-percent raise for teachers.

But with last week’s warning from the state, questions remain. Despite Metro’s insistence that the raise will come, many are asking from where?

“But as so many other things right now, it’s a work in progress on what the exact game plan is,” said Councilmember Bob Mendes, during a council meeting Monday.

Concern is now growing among Metro teacher groups.

“Teacher’s definitely want to make sure that it is happening,” said Amanda Kail, President of Metro Nashville Education Association. “I understand the metro finances are in a difficult place, but we need to figure it out.”

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