After raise in sales tax, South Dakota teachers get $5,000 boost in pay

During the first year of a South Dakota law that raised the state’s sales tax rate in order to boost teacher pay, average salaries increased by nearly $5,000 — to $46,979 in 2016-17. This change means the state no longer has the lowest average teacher salaries in the country; it now ranks 48th, according to the most recent study done by the National Education Association. South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard notes, too, that his state ranks 29th when the these averages are adjusted to reflect state and local tax burdens as well as regional price parity data.

In 2016, with passage of HB 1182, the South Dakota Legislature increased the state’s sales tax rate from 4.0 percent to 4.5 percent. This marked the first change in the rate since 1969. (South Dakota does not have a state income tax.)

In the Midwest, two states (Illinois and Michigan) rank above the national average for teacher pay ($59,660). Over the past decade, the NEA study found, inflation-adjusted, average teacher salaries have increased in four Midwestern states: Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.
This year, legislation has been introduced in Illinois (SB 2892) to set a a minimum salary of $40,000 a year for full-time teachers.
Stateline Midwest: May 20182.4 MB