At the July 17 school board meeting, Carroll trustees approved the first batch of small projects from the May 2017 bond package, with the goal that some of them could be completed before school starts Aug. 28.
The time critical projects to complete before students return included replacing air conditioning and heating units at Rockenbaugh Elementary and repairing a nuisance plumbing problem at Walnut Grove Elementary School.
Trustee Danny Gilpin said he would like to see a master schedule of projects from the $208 million bond package that is constantly updated and includes budget numbers.
Officials recently purchased software to track items, progress and budgets, but uploading all the data and customizing it for Carroll schools is taking some time, they said.
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“The trouble is we’re trying to get things done pretty quickly this summer while we’re trying to set up this software, and those budgets and those line items, and still try to go forward and get something done before school starts,” said Matt Miller, assistant superintendent for administrative services.
At Rockenbaugh Elementary School, a number of heat exchange units failed last fall, prompting district officials to replace a little over half of the school’s HVAC units. Since the remaining units are the same model and age, officials recommended replacing them.
Trustees approved an expenditure of $420,460, which includes helicopter staging to lift the units, environmental costs and a 10 percent contingency fee. The new units will be more energy efficient and require fewer repairs, Miller said.
For Walnut Grove Elementary, which was part of the 2009 bond and opened in 2011, school board members gave administrators the authority to approve the solution that gives “the best value to the district.”
Miller said the school has had frequent plumbing and drainage problems underneath part of the school.
“The problem has been going on for more than just the last year. It’s just gradually gotten worse,” he said.
John Haugen, the district’s bond consultant, said officials are looking at two possible solutions, one which would be a simple fix and another that is more complex. With the first day of school just a month away, officials wanted the authority to get the problem addressed before the building is full of staff and students, he said.
Although officials did not give an amount to estimate the cost of the work, they said it should be within the amount they budgeted for the repair. They’re in the process of obtaining three competitive bids.
Other projects approved included $292,440 for new computer room air conditioning units at the district’s Disaster Recovery Center, another project from the 2009 bond. The Disaster Recovery Center, which opened in 2010, houses the district’s primary data collection and redundant power systems in the event of an outage or emergency.
Officials said that two of the three HVAC units have not been functioning properly for the last year and needed to be replaced to ensure computer systems would continue to operate.