AUSTIN, Texas — Nicole Conley, the chief of business and operations for Austin Independent School District (AISD), said she's encouraged by House Bill 3.
The bill, if passed, would bring in more money to school districts across the state.
"This is a huge infusion of money. You’re talking about $9 billion on the table going into public education and property tax relief," said Conley. "It’s a great step forward, of course it gives us some relief."
Conley said just the money will balance the budget and will help give AISD the opportunity to create competitive teacher wages.
"Our compensation for our teachers, our competitive salaries, have been declining over time. Many of our teachers and workforce can’t afford to live in Austin, so we need to make meaningful progress on salary increases," said Conley.
She said she doubts this will affect the considerations regarding closing or consolidating schools.
"Is it going to save every fiscal challenge that we have? No. We’re losing enrollment," said Conley. "Every year, it necessitates looking at our systems to see if we’re allocating our resources in a way that supports our current populations of students we’re serving."
Conley said they have to figure out how to best meet student needs, regardless of if the bill passes or not.