Cleveland City Schools Site Committee Gets Update On Construction Progress, Needs

Thursday, August 21, 2014 - by Tony Eubank
The Cleveland City Schools site committee on Thursday heard from Maintenance and Transportation Supervisor Hal Taylor a rundown of maintenance and construction needs, as well as an update concerning projects that were completed over the summer. 

Supervisor Taylor said summer activities included the completion of a new roof at Stuart Elementary, the installation of a boiler at Yates Primary, and the complete, interior and exterior painting of E.L. Ross Elementary.

He said all of the district's buses are running and that his department is now handling all the preventative maintenance for the buses, as well the school system’s HVAC.

Supervisor Taylor also informed the board that the press box at Cleveland High’s football field needs a new roof immediately. Mr. Taylor said that the longer the project is put off, the more costly it will become, as the structural damage could progress. When asked about  the cost Mr. Taylor said it could range between $5,000 to $15,000, but that there is really no way to tell until an estimate is done.

In addition to the press box repairs, Mr. Taylor also asked for permission to get the Cleveland Middle School Gym’s sound system replaced as the old one cannot be used. CMS Principal Mike Collier elaborated on the situation, “We knew that the system was in bad shape and that it had some issues. We had talked about taking what was left (from the CHS volleyball gym system) and being able to fix and upgrade our system. We had no idea that ours was going to be completely worthless when we got it down and started looking at it. It was not put in the correct way the first time.  Right now we have no sound in the gym. For orientation and anything else we do now, which is very limited, we use portables that we borrowed from the band.”

The estimated cost of a new sound system is about $13,000. Board member Peggy Pesterfield stated that project over $10,000 subject to a bidding process. Ms. Pesterfield and Director of schools Dr. Martin Ringstaff both agreed that the matter is urgent. Dr. Ringstaff said, “I went to the middle school assembly and there was a band speaker out in the middle of the floor. It was good enough to get that small portion done. Sound systems are mandatory.”

Dr. Ringstaff suggested that the sound system and some other urgent repairs be put on the agenda for approval at the September board meeting.

Business and Finance Manager Brenda Carson said that with the sales tax projections that there should be enough money to cover all of the work in the Sales Tax Capital Project Fund. Ms. Carson was reticent to guarantee the funds would be there, as it is based on projections and the school system already has around $500,000 tied up in other capital projects. Ms. Carson also said, that officials need to be careful to make sure to set aside about $200,000 or so of this year's tax revenue for next year, in the event future emergency projects.

The site committee agreed to put the press box roof and CMS sound system on the agenda for the Sept. 4 meeting.

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