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Capital Project Announcement October 2013

Capital Project Approved

Six hundred and one people turned out to vote in Salmon River School District’s $36.5 million capital project vote, which was held in the SRC high school auditorium October 22, 2013. District voters approved funding for the capital project 382-212. However, voters rejected proposition two, 425-176, which would have allowed the district to build a synthetic turf field.

The scope of the project includes renovations and improvements to boilers, the water system, plumbing, roofs, ventilation, electrical, exterior, classrooms throughout all three school buildings, the high school gymnasium, and the bus garage; asbestos abatement and field work. Approximately 147,000 square feet of leaking and deteriorating roofs and ventilation systems that haven’t been upgraded since the 1950’s and 1960’s will be among the most important upgrades.

After voters turned down the previous project proposal in March, a Capital Project Committee was formed to review the scope of the work and provide feedback to the Buildings and Grounds Committee. The committee recommended the removal of a bus wash and indoor track for the high school gymnasium which amounted to approximately $2.8 million. The Department of Health however, has since directed the district to develop a new water source. Water upgrades are budgeted at approximately $2.4 million

“I want to thank the community for turning out to support the project,” said Superintendent Jane Collins after the tallies were announced. “I’m looking forward to refining the design process and working with the staff and the board.”

The project will be funded with a combination of NYS building aid, NYS EXCEL aid, NYS Native American Aid and District debt reserves. The Native American Aid will be based on the percentage of enrollment of Native American students who reside on the St. Regis Mohawk Reservation and is funded at the beginning of the project. EXCEL aid is an additional funding amount provided by the State as an incentive for schools to undertake a capital project. This project would be allowed to use $410,000. EXCEL funding would be provided once the project has started. NYS building aid would be reimbursed over the life of the project at a rate of 98 percent and funding would begin once the final cost report is filed with the state. District debt reserves would cover the remaining $414,360 that the other aid streams do not cover. The debt reserve was set up by the District at the beginning of the previous capital project so that proceeds from low interest bonds and refunding bonds could be maintained to pay future debt payments.