LAMPASAS — In an effort to remain competitive with surrounding school districts, the Lampasas board of trustees on Monday approved a salary and stipend pay increase for district employees.

Teachers on a 10-month contract will receive a $1,380 raise next year. Aides and clerical and auxiliary staff receive a 5 percent increase while administrators and professionals get 3 percent of their salary’s midpoint range, according to the school district.

The new salary schedule adds about $700,000 to the district’s budget. School officials approved the decision in a 5 to 1 majority vote despite costly repairs to Hanna Springs Elementary School looming on the horizon.

Board president James Briggs supported the pay increases but at a lower rate than one suggested by Randall Hoyer, superintendent.

Briggs recommended they raise the salaries in increments in coming years with the hope that school funding deficits become more clearly defined and the district can better absorb the cost of revamping the HVAC system at Hanna Springs. His recommendation died for lack of support.

Chief Financial Officer Shane Jones outlined for board members the costs associated with repairing the HVAC system at Hanna Springs, which has had problems since it was installed.

“It’s fairly inefficient, as it is, and we’re hoping to get some long-term estimates of the cost to replace the whole system,” Jones said. “We’re not getting the full life expectancy out of the system, as we should, and the compressor units are faulty.”

Jones explained it’s difficult to find new parts when necessary, and an engineering study should help district officials decide if it’s more cost efficient to replace the whole system or continue to “limp it along.”

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