• Bob Vlach, Woodford Sun Staff 16

School board sets facilities tax hearing for Oct. 12

The Woodford County Board of Education voted to have a public hearing on a proposed 6-cent facilities tax on Thursday, Oct. 12, at Woodford County High School, beginning at 7 p.m. "At that meeting," said board Chair Ambrose Wilson IV, "we would vote to move forward with the 6-cent increase or to not." The board's unanimous decision to have a tax hearing comes after three public forums were held in recent weeks to get feedback from people living in the community on a proposed facilities tax to cover the cost of building a new high school, which would replace the existing high school on Frankfort Street. Budget The board unanimously approved a $54.6 million working budget for the 2017-18 school year. In terms of general fund dollars in the budget, 53.16 percent is being spent on school-based instruction and services, 8.27 percent pays for facility operations and maintenance, 6.31 percent covers student transportation costs, and 4.7 percent pays for district support and technology. The general fund includes an 11.46 percent ($4.982 million) contingency. An 8.3 percent contingency would cover one month's operating expenses, Chief Operating Officer Amy Smith told board members during her budget presentation on Sept. 18. Maintenance projects The board delayed taking action on a bid proposal to replace the vehicle lift at the district's bus garage. Smith noted that the lone bid (received from Eubank & Steele Construction Company) was much higher than anticipated in terms of plumbing work associated with the replacement of the lift. The district's architect, Margie Jacobs, will meet with the contractor to see if an agreement can be reached to reduce the cost with a change order on the project, Smith said. That meeting was scheduled to occur this week "so that we can hopefully revisit (approving a revised bid) in October," she continued. "The base bid for the lift itself did come in under budget. It's some additional plumbing work that had to be done that was a little excessive." The board did approve a bid to upgrade door hardware so the doorknobs at Northside and Southside Elementary schools will comply with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations. The bid of $87,375 from Schiller Hardware was $30,574 less than what was originally budgeted for the project, schools Superintendent Scott Hawkins noted. Northside and Southside were built prior to new ADA regulations for door hardware in public schools.

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