ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – It is official, Albuquerque Public Schools has a new superintendent. Doctor Luis Valentino has a contract and he’ll hit the ground running come July 1st.

Friday morning the school board agreed to pay Valentino $240,000 a year to start. That’s $40,000 less than former Superintendent Winston Brooks was making before he was shown the door last year.

The board picked Valentino for the job earlier this month from three finalists. Board President Don Duran says Valentino’s selection was unanimous.

So how does his contract compare to superintendents at similar school districts? In Tucson, the current superintendent makes $211,000 a year. In Austin they make $286,000 annually.

Valentino’s deal is for three years. During that time the district will include benefits like medical insurance and a supplemental retirement plan where the district will contribute $20,000 in 2015-2016, $30,000 in 2016-2017 and $35,000 in 2017-2018.

After Valentino’s initial selection he says he has some big issues to tackle.

“The academic achievement that is one that most districts struggle even the district I’m coming from. That would be the primary goal how to address the achievement gap. The other one would be the budget,” Valentino said.

Another big issue ahead of Valentino is a multi-million dollar budget deficit. Valentino is currently the associate superintendent and chief academic officer for San Francisco’s school district.

APS let Winston Brooks go last summer after an investigation into personnel matters that the district won’t reveal. He was given a $350,000 buyout.

To see a copy of the contract click here.

More education stories: