AUSTIN – Texas Public Policy Foundation Director of the Center for Local Governance James Quintero and Economist Dr. Vance Ginn issued the following statements on the Dallas Independent School District administrator’s proposal of a minimum wage increase for maintenance and operation employees to $10.37 per hour for the 2016-17 school year.

“Dallas ISD faces a massive debt load of $4.2 billion and this ‘living wage’ proposal could grow that by spending at least $1.2 million more every year,” said Dr. Ginn. “This action would burden taxpayers with higher taxes and do nothing to improve students’ education. Given basic economics and the school district’s dire financial position, the Dallas ISD Board should reject this proposal. Paying someone a living wage is a noble goal, but it should come through merit-based increases.”

“Union officials want a 25 percent pay raise for some public school employees. That’s incredibly hard to justify seeing as student enrollment has all but flatlined and school district spending is up in a major way,” said Quintero. “From 2004-05 to 2014-15, DISD’s student population barely grew 1 percent while the statewide average increased by 14.6 percent. At the same time, district spending grew by more than 33 percent and now special interest groups want to grow that even more.”

Vance Ginn, Ph.D. is an Economist in the Center for Fiscal Policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. 
James Quintero is director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin, Texas.

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