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Board approves bidding for middle school track upgrade

June 14, 2012
By J.T. Whitehouse , Town Crier

The Canfield Board of Education gave its approval to accept bids for repaving the middle school parking lot, which will also include an upgrade to the track off Edwards Avenue. It will also include a new track surface for which students have helped raise funds during the past five years.

The CVMS parking lot repaving is an area that needs to be dealt with, according to business manager Rich Archer. He told the board the present condition of the parking lot and drop-off circle is poor.

"The circle and the big lot is alligatoring," he said.

Repaving would solve the problem and the plan is to move into the grassy area on the east end of the parking lot to provide roughly 28 to 30 additional parking spaces.

"Anytime there is a middle school function, parking is an issue," he said.

By adding additional spaces, the parking problem could be somewhat eased.

Also included in the repaving plan is a revamping of the track off Edwards Avenue. The running track is gravel based and is subject to flooding areas. The track is also used by coaches for summer youth sports and has one vehicle entrance.

Archer said the students at the middle school have raised roughly $20,000 to refurbish the track. The project will be combined with the paving plan to provide a horseshoe vehicle entrance. Archer said the a second vehicle gate would be added on the north side of the track. A road would be constructed to allow vehicles to enter the south (present) entrance, drive around the track and exit on the north side.

"Parents could pull in off Edwards and drop off or pick up their kids, then safely exit," Archer said. "It will relieve the congestion for drop off and pick up at the middle school."

The track itself would be fenced in to keep it separate from the vehicles and would possibly be finished with a recycled rubber surface. The inside grassy area would remain the same and continued to be used for a practice field.

How much of the track upgrade would be accomplished will depend on bid costs.

Archer also got approval to get bids for two new buses. With the totaled bus from an accident earlier in the school year, the district had to put its spare into service. The hope is to get two buses to bring the fleet back up to par.

One good note Archer brought up was the fact the mild winter and reduced need for road salt helped in preserving the bus bodies and frames from rust. He said the district has found the Carpenter brand buses are subject to rusting more than other makes. He also mentioned that he would consider buying used buses as past purchased have worked out well.

The board approved putting out bids for two buses.

On another note, District Treasurer Pattie Kesner presented the five-year forecast to the board. The forecast revealed that the district will be spending more than it brings in over each of the next five years. The district normally has a carry-over balance at the end of the school year. The projected carryover for 2012 is $5,119,970. That balance drops drastically in each of the following years to 2015 when the carryover will be $157,927. In fiscal year 2016, the district will be in the red by $2,461,973.

"The bottom line is that we are deficit spending each year," she told board members. "We are eating up our carryover balance. It amazes me that we have been able to go out this far."

She said cost cutting measures and staff reductions have helped ease the deficit spending, but it can't continue forever without new funding. She presented calculations for a November levy that included a 3.9 mill, 4.9, 5.9 and 6.9. The two smaller ones would not prevent the district from going into the red in 2016.

Kesner did say she expects a five percent increase in health care costs this coming year and 10 percent each year after. Superintendent Dante Zambrini said he heard the electric company is asking for a 33 percent increase from the Ohio Public Utilities Commission. He said that would be devastating to the school's energy budget.

In other business:

CHS grad and coach Dick Duffet spoke to the board about the June 30 golf outing for CHS alumni. He said the hopes is to raise $50,000 that would help provide scholarships for athletes who could not afford the pay-to-play fees. He said it could also be used for the drama club and band fees to make sure every student has a chance to participate. The board approved the use of the school logo to be used in the golf outing brochures and entry forms.

The board approved the retirement for Hilltop teacher Kay Abel, C.H. Campbell teachers Rosemary Rothbauer, Martha Dyer and Andrea Armbrecht, and CVMS teacher Linda Mazias. Zambrini said the last 13 retirees had a total of 377.7 years of experience between them.

The board also approved the resignation of the position of CHS summer physical education teacher Ronie Haurin.

Approval was given for the hiring of the following: CHS physical education teacher Robert Tinkey, CHS summer math teacher Stacy Madison, CVMS summer teacher Kristine Caporale, Success by 6 teacher Lisa Zetts, Success by 6 summer tutor Linda Magyar, and summer physical education teacher Donald Hernan. Also approved were summer helpers Wendy Racki and Jackie Glista.



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