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Fulton County Schools superintendent gets pay raise

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Mike Looney

LOONEY

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — Mike Looney continues to move closer to the top of the list of the most compensated school superintendents in Georgia.

At a Nov. 9 work session, the Fulton County Board of Education unanimously extended Looney’s contract through 2024, including compensation changes, but did not disclose details of those changes until the board’s attorneys had a chance to review them.

The Herald obtained a copy of the amended contract through an open records request late last month. The document states that Looney’s annual salary of $335,580 will increase by 2.5% on July 1, plus the percentage increase approved for the teacher salary schedule.

Other amendments also allow the board to offer Looney a “discretionary bonus” following an annual evaluation and to make contributions to any tax-sheltered pension plans it has established including his 403(b) and 401(a) plans equal to 12.5% of his annual base salary.

Fulton County Schools extends superintendent’s contract through 2024

This is the first time the school board has made changes to Looney’s initial contract since he was hired in 2019. However, district spokeswoman Anne Boatwright said Looney’s final salary amount has not been determined because the board has yet to approve a new budget for the next fiscal year. That process will not take place until early June.

Looney was hired with a base salary of $329,000, plus the percentage increase approved for the teacher salary schedule and over $2,000 in monthly allowances to cover expenses and a vehicle. It also included a 10% contribution to his retirement plans.

School Board President Julia Bernath was not immediately available for comment, but, at the Nov. 9 work session, she and other school board members highly praised Looney for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Reach Chamian Cruz at 770-847-8079. Follow her on Twitter @xchamian.