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Brett Waltner sworn in as school board member

Tea Area School Board president John Herr led his final meeting, while Brett Waltner was sworn in as a new school board member at the July 8 meeting.

The board elected Kristen Daggett as president and Conrad Pick as vice president. Superintendent Jennifer Lowery thanked Herr for his 12 years of service on the board.

The board discussed funding for the new bus barn and CTE facility that is planned to be located on the north end of the high school parking lot between the high school and the track. The district has been awarded a $225,000 grant. However, the total project estimate is $1,442,917.57

Additional recommended funding sources come from a remaining bond certificate balance of $913,645.88, general conditions savings of $75,000, FF&E savings of $20,000, contingency savings from the Frontier project of $45,900 and $150,000 from a CD. With those funding sources, the district is still $13,371.69 short.

After discussion at length on funding for the project, the board unanimously approved the base bids for earthwork and site utilities from Soukup at $225,893, building system from Reeves at $481,775.57, HVAC from J&R Mechanical for $160,550, plumbing from Hander at $88,840 and electrical from Electric Construction Co. at $184,359. The board was going to rebid concrete.

Operations manager Wayne Larsen updated the board on construction progress at Venture Elementary. Work in the kitchen and restrooms have been completed. Electricians are installing devices in classrooms. Carpet installations is almost done in the classrooms. Appliances are coming in for the kitchen. They continue to work on drying out the gym so the wood floor can be installed.

At Frontier Elementary, the classroom area is progressing. They have been painted. The HVAC rooftop unit was set last week. Electricians and plumbers have tied into the main building. They are trying to dry out the gym floor so concrete can be poured. Roofers are coming this week. Larsen said the focus is finishing the classroom and band room to be ready for the start of school. The gym portion deadline is scheduled for the end of September.

Lowery noted that they have begun looking for land for a future elementary on the north end of the district. They are looking at two pieces at this time. As for the Lennox land swap, the Lennox school board meets July 15 and Lowery believes they will come back with another proposal.

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