Mike Looney, current superintendent of Butler County Schools in Alabama was chosen as superintendent of Williamson County schools initially in an 11-1 vote. Contacted by phone last night by board chairman Pat Anderson and attorney Chuck Cagle, Looney accepted the job and will enter into negotiations for a final salary offer.

Board member Gary Anderson who offered a new motion at the end of the meeting to make the decision unanimous in support of Looney cast lone dissenting vote in the initial tally.

At the meeting last night, board members discussed the salary for the newly chosen superintendent. At the recommendation of the school board with input from search consultants Ray & Associates, the Williamson County Commission set the salary cap in the $180,000s when the initial search began.

Pat Anderson said the salary range was "based on the salary of the Director of Schools at the time the search was initiated. That was how we sold it to the funding body. That's how we were able to set the salary at a greater amount than what is currently budgeted."

Although discussions are still underway, the board voted to begin negations with a salary cap of $168,000, which includes the requisite 5 percent retirement contribution as mandated by Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System, health insurance for him and potentially use of the vehicle owned by the school district.

The $168,000 is arrived at by considering Looney's Butler County salary, which is $120,000 plus in 40 percent increase, recommended by Ray & Associates, who told the board that no candidate would move for less than a 40 percent salary increase.

The board passed the salary recommendation with a 7-5 vote, members Janice Moore, Janine Mils, Susan Graham, Pat Anderson and D'Wayne Greer voting against the measure.

© 2009 Williamson Herald

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