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Richland County School District One approves $500 bonuses for fuel costs

The Richland One School Board is trying to help district staff manage the additional costs of rising fuel prices.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Columbia's Richland County School District One has approved a $500 bonus for all full-time staff to help offset the rising cost of fuel. 

Over the past month, gas in South Carolina has risen by about 70 cents per gallon. 

"As a potential retention strategy, the administration requests funding to give all full-time staff members $500 to offset the cost of rising fuel prices," said Chief Operations Officer, Edward Carlon.

Although most board members seemed excited about the new fuel bonus, board member Beatrice King did not understand the need for it.

"It's not just the price of gas going up. It's food, it's rent prices going up too," King stated.

Despite the initial pushback, all seven board members ultimately voted to approve the bonus.

Board Chairwoman Cheryl Harris says she is thankful for the board's consideration of this issue because she hears stories firsthand.

"I had a teacher text me that they were deciding whether to buy food for themselves and their family or if they should buy gas to come to work, and this teacher lives two counties away," Harris told the board.

Richland One School Board will meet again on April 26 at Eau Claire High School, and the community is welcome to attend.

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