Saturday, September 27, 2008

A brand new field for a school about to close.

A reader of the blog recently commented that the brand new field at Evergreen Elementary looks great. It struck me as odd since the school is scheduled for closure - pending the charade of a "study" by the Board. Why would the District, when facing budget problems, spend anything on the field at Evergreen when they plan to close the school?

A quick glance through the Capital Projects website reveals that three fields were recently renovated. The fields are located at Evergreen, Cedar Way and Westgate and cost more than $467,653. Assuming that all three fields were of similar condition and required the same level of investment, the cost for renovating the field at Evergreen would be approximately $155,884, plus $14,030 in sales tax. That's a lot of cheese sandwiches.

Added to that expense would be the brand new playground that was installed a couple of years ago. That project wasn't cheap either at $31,500, including sales tax. Even more cheese sandwiches.

Then there are the power and cabling upgrades at four different schools - one of which was Evergreen. The total for those four schools was $408,100, with an average expense per school of $102,025, plus $9,182 in sales tax. Piles and piles of cheese sandwiches.

If you ask the District why they just dumped more than $312,621.00 into a site that is scheduled to close, they'll tell you about their commitment to tax payers when the last levy and bond passed. The District committed to completing these projects and they aren't about to go against the wishes of the community. Of course, the community didn't know that Evergreen was scheduled for closure.

If the School Board read the Capital Facilities Plan at any time since 2002, they would have known that school closures were coming and they could have started a "study" back then - avoiding the senseless spending of untold fortunes on a school limping along toward an inevitable closure.


Anonymous said...

What does the brand new field look like? What did they do to it?

Is the cost of everything going to be compared to cheese sandwiches now? said...

There shouldn't be any real difference in appearance. The contractor basically cuts a bunch of narrow trenches into the field to improve drainage. The trenches are filled with a special mix of substances that help move water away from the surface.

Fields that are normally very wet can then become dry enough to use more often. Unless, of course, the neighbor plows a bunch of cookies in the field with his 4 wheel drive again.

It isn't rocket science but the process is protected and therefore costs a huge amount of cheese sandwiches to install.

Anonymous said...

The new field at Evergreen was not hydroseeded like the others. If it had been then the kids currently at Evergreen would not be able to use the field this year so that paticular field was laid with sod!