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HANOVERTON – The United Local School District faces a 15 percent increase in their share of the school building project budget due to escalating inflation, said superintendent Lance Hostetler at the district’s board meeting Wednesday.

“As part of their review committee, as you know, we are in charge of 41 percent. Due to escalated costs, their projected, the last report, they’re estimating as a 15 percent overage,” he said.

Based on those numbers, Hostetler said he projects that the entire LFI account will be needed for the building purposes. That would not include any LFI upgrades, Hostetler said, such as brick, operable partitions, or flooring.

He said some of the fund had been allotted for overages, but some of that was also for material upgrades and other things like capping and those materials are likely to get more expensive as well, he said.

Hostetler said schematic design was almost done. “Our part and the architect’s part and the manager’s parts are almost done in schematic design,” he said. “They were given to the state on April 5. The state did have further questions and we have another meeting scheduled for May 3.”

He said the target is May for the board to get a full update on the project. “Hopefully by that point the state will allow us to proceed into the DD phase which is design, develop,” Hostetler said. “There’s three phases until you get to the end and you actually bid out.”

Until then, he said, it is in the state’s hands. He gave an example of one of the state’s questions. “As far as I know, this might be the first time they’ve asked us how much of an overage [it] was to build on the existing site,” Hostetler said. “Some questions were why didn’t you build at the bottom of the hill? Flooding tends to happen at bottoms of hills.”

He said people ask him sometimes as to why crews are not yet at work on the project. “I get some questions from time to time,” Hostetler said. “Why aren’t there bulldozers out there? It does keep delaying the process.” He said at this time the plan is for a kickoff in spring 2023, but added that more state delays could likely kick that date back.

In other board business for April, the board:

Approved an agreement with ISC Audio Systems to replace the gymnasium sound system for $27,643.20 and the stadium sound system for $43,804.55

Approved an agreement with Bluum of Texas, LLC to buy 6 grade levels of Chromebooks at a cost of $236,280 using ESSER grant money

Approved the transfer from 1984 PI to 034 Maintenance Fund in the amount of $52,205.56 to meet OFCC requirements for the building project maintenance fund.

Voted to approve the recognition of Juneteenth (June 19) with the passage of the federal law, which is for all regular non teaching employees employed on an 11 or 12-month basis and will be recognized on the federally recognized date

Approved $2,742.07 of total donations

Moved to open a new State Treasury Asset Reserve (STAR Ohio) bank account for the state funding portion of the building project

Approved the Nutrition Group renewal for operation of food service

Resolved to administer paper versions of state assessments to third graders during the 2022-2023 school year for ELA tests only

Approved an agreement with Summit Educational Service Center Governing Board for educational audiology services

Approved ten fundraiser requests

Approved the certified transfer of Abigail Walkama from first grade to fourth grade

Approved the employment of Jeni Stewart as first grade teacher at step two, effective Aug. 24

Approved of the career programming teacher job description

Voted to approved the use of chartered buses to Pittsburgh for the high school choir

Approved a field trip for the second graders to visit the Maps Air Museum in April 2022

Approved 21 community volunteers

Approved the employment of certified substitute Matthew Baxter, Alliance, for general education and integrated social studies

Awarded 2021-2022 supplemental contracts to Stacey Zines, softball, assistant varsity softball and Josh Good, track, assistant track, both at step one

Board members also shared information about upcoming events including:

The annual honors program at 7 p.m. on May 11 with guest speaker Bruce Cooper

The senior assembly at 9 a.m. on May 26

Day of Memory at 10 a.m. with guest speaker Tom Coffee

Commencement at 2 p.m. May 29 with guest speaker Rachael Blaisman

llehman@mojonews.com

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