Voters in Martin County on Tuesday gave themselves a property tax increase to improve teacher pay.
The vote, 56-44 percent in favor of the increase, comes just a year after voters soundly defeated a sales tax proposal.
Danielle McDonough of Martin County Parents United said Tuesday's hike in property taxes will give teachers a boost both morally and financially.
"It lets them know that we support them, and our community has said we want our teachers to stay. We want valuable teachers here. Our children are important, our grandchildren are important,” said McDonough.
Martin County Parents United has been active before County Commissioners and the school board.
The millage increase will be in effect for the next four years.
It should raise about $11.2 million each year with about 77 percent of that money going toward teacher salaries.
"We want to keep our seasoned veteran teachers. We want to support them, and we want to be able to pay them to keep them here,” said McDonough.
A homeowner with a property valued at $250,000 will see a $125 annual increase.
A second property tax hike is on the November ballot in Martin County. That proposed tax hike would pay for capital improvement projects.