KPBSD adopts six-year project plan

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education unanimously approved a six-year plan for improvement projects for fiscal years 2015 to 2021 at its March 3 meeting.

The district will submit the plan to the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development in late August to seek funding for various maintenance and capital projects.

Projects on the wish list for fiscal year 2015 in order of priority include:

• Kenai Middle School asbestos removal and office remodel priced at $7.5 million;

• Homer High School re-roof with a $5.6 million price tag;

• Kachemak Selo new school construction with a cost of $16 million;

• Homer High fire alarm upgrade at $275,000;

• Chapman Elementary School window and siding replacement priced at $500,000.

The next million dollar projects don’t make the list until 2019 with Ninilchik, Seward and Skyview High Schools’ tracks listed at $4 million and a $2 million turf field for Seward High School. The following year sees a $1 million parking and traffic upgrade for Mountain View Elementary and $16.5 million for phase three of a district-wide re-roofing project.

However, Pegge Erkeneff, KPBSD spokesperson, wrote in an email if next summer’s roofing projects are completed ahead of schedule and funding is still available, the district would be able to complete additional roofing projects and forgo phase three for 2020. She said when 2020 arrives, the district will look at all of its schools to determine if any maintenance is needed.

Dave Tressler, director of the planning and operations department, presented the plan to the board at the work session.

Each project falls under a category from A to G, and projects toward the beginning of the alphabet are more likely to get funding, he said.

The Kenai Middle asbestos removal and office remodel is listed under the A category — health and safety. The problem stems from spray applied asbestos fire proofing material falling from the ceiling. The maintenance department has been removing loose asbestos as it occurs. According to the plan, the office needs to be reconfigured to allow for better visual surveillance of people entering and leaving the school.

He said projects also score better when preliminary drawings and other design and planning aspects are ready. Some of the projects on the district’s plan have preliminary plans ready, but getting some other plans to get to that point would cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, he said.

The next board meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on April 14 in the George A. Navarre Administration Building in Soldotna.

Kaylee Osowski can be reached at kaylee.osowski@peninsulaclarion.com.

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