- Associated Press - Friday, March 11, 2016

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - Gov. Dennis Daugaard has signed into law a half-cent sales tax hike for teacher salaries, capping off a legislative session focused on education funding.

The Republican governor on Friday put his signature on a package of education measures that in part raise the state’s target average teacher salary to $48,500 per year.

Daugaard says the measures will make South Dakota competitive with surrounding states when it comes to pay for educators.

Mary McCorkle is president of the South Dakota Education Association. She says “it’s a day of celebration.”

McCorkle says the measures provide opportunities for South Dakota students and the state’s schools.

Daugaard also signed a measure aimed at improving school efficiency that’s part of the education changes.

Lawmakers wrapped up the main run of the 2016 legislative session Friday.

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