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Text The Times.

Text The Times.


It’s been several weeks now since I texted the time and asked you for an answer. I asked you to find the answer. Here is my first text. I said, that governor Asa Hutchinson passed a bill that Teachers in Arkansas would get a $1,000 dollar raise. This was in the Arkansas Democrat. My question is: will the teachers in Marion get this raise plus the 3 1/2% raise Dr. Fenter promised? I asked if you would check into this and let people know what answer is. I’m waiting for your answer. I believe the public should know. The teachers deserve a good raise. AND I am not a teacher. [Editor’s Note: This is the first time I’ve seen a text about this, so sorry if your original text somehow slipped through the cracks or disappeared into cyber-space. Anyhow, just to clarify, the law that the legislature passed and Governor Hutchinson signed adds $1,000 per year for the next four years to the base salary for first-year teachers. This means, the minimum salary for a first-year public school teacher in the State of Arkansas was $32,000 per year for the recently concluded 2018-2019 school year. For the upcoming 2019-2020 school year, the minimum salary for a first-year public school teacher in the State of Arkansas will $33,000 per year. The minimum will go up $1,000 again for the following three years, capping out at $36,000 per year for firstyear teachers. This has nothing to do with any teachers other than first-year novice teachers coming out of college with a four-year degree. School districts that already start higher than the required minimum are unaffected by the law. This includes Marion, which has a first-year base salary of $40,805 for a novice teacher with a bachelor’s degree, so the district is already more than $4,000 per year above what the state-required minimum will be in four years. So, I guess to answer your question, no, teachers in Marion will not get any raises from the new law, as they are all already well above the minimums set by the state. Any raises given out by the district will be because the administration saw fit to give them and not due to any state mandate, which, again is already far exceeded by the district. In case you were wondering, and I’d be willing to bet you are, West Memphis also easily exceeds the state-required starting salary for a first-year teacher at $42,000 per year. Earle is slightly ahead of the curve, having already established a $33,000 per year salary for first-year teachers last school year. The district has not yet published its salary schedule for the 2019-2020 school year. I hope this addresses all of your concerns]

*** Will somebody please find out who burned down Shirl’s she shed, give us all a break

[Editor’s Note: What? I’m still trying to convince people I’m not Jake from State Farm. I mean, just because we both like to wear khakis…]

*** Freedom of speech also allows my opinion of what is posted in your paper and your thoughts. My point about Mr. Rose’s back, simply means that my intelligence and credibility has taught me, that if you have a back problem that requires you to be disabled, you certainly would not be lifting heavy signs. Surely you being the intelligent man you are, would allow you to read between the lines. I do apologize if I mislead you in any way. [ Editor’s Note: You know, answering these “Text the Times” questions is always fun. Something you may not know: After reading a submitted text, I immediately write out my response saying exactly how I feel after reading it. Then, I re-read it after a while and decide whether or not I need to change anything. Usually, I tone down my snarkiness if I’ve been particularly mean-spirited or rude. Folks sometimes ask me, “How do you answer some of those ridiculous questions?” Well, that’s how. And your original text was one of those. I read it, wrote out my response, and thought, “You know, maybe I was a little harsh there?” So what you read was my edited “kindler, gentler” take on your comments. So, please allow me to retort… you did not mislead me at all. There were no lines to “read between” here. You decided that you didn’t like Mr. Rose’s anti-panhandling sign so in an ill-conceived attempt to discredit his efforts, you decided to bring up some completely irrelevant information concerning his physical disability. I suppose you deliberately chose to ignore the fact that Mr. Rose had help in putting up the signs. I don’t really know what Mr. Rose’s back had to do with any of that, honestly, but way to take the high road, I guess? Anyway, enjoy all of that “intelligence and credibility”]

*** I thought West Memphis was getting a Chik-fil-A. It is coming or not? [Editor’s Note: We get a $60 million brand new hospital, a $250 casino expansion, and the city is applying for a $35 million revitalization grant, and week after week, the question people really want the answer to: “Are we getting a Chick-fil-A?” Here’s the facts: If the City of West Memphis and Chick-fil-A have signed an agreement, it has not been made official. Anyone saying otherwise is either lying or in on some secret that has not been made public. No, they did not “pull out of the deal” either, as there has been no deal made to pull out of. So, whatever you might have heard there is also misinformation. There is a site on the I-40 Service Road near Walgreens that is a potential site for a potential Chick-fil-A, but… and I can not stress this enough, there is no official contract to open a Chick-fil-A at this time that I am aware of, but there is a good chance that the popular restaurant could announce something in the near future]

*** Well, you can’t get a Monday paper to me on Monday, telling me you’ll mail them to Horseshoe Lake area. Today is Tuesday and no paper came today. Where do you mail them from? I’m sick of dealing with the Evening Times. [Editor’s Note: The newspaper industry is struggling nationwide. Mailing our papers to outlying areas of the county was a move made to reduce costs while still providing service to our rural customers. It’s early in the transition process, but this is so far the only complaint we’ve received. I’d be interested to hear from our readers to know how the change is going for everyone else affected by the switch]

Here’s what everyone is talking about this week:

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