Archive for Thursday, October 15, 2009

Bond issue projects continue to be low … including new road

Work crew begun in earnest at the site of the new Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center after the state approved the project and the city issued a building permit. The entire $22.9 million bond project continues to come in with low bids and remains under budget by $1 million.

Work crew begun in earnest at the site of the new Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center after the state approved the project and the city issued a building permit. The entire $22.9 million bond project continues to come in with low bids and remains under budget by $1 million.

October 15, 2009

Good news came Monday night regarding Baldwin School District’s 2008 bond issue projects’ budget.

Merv Penner reported the good news to the Baldwin School Board members at their monthly meeting. He said the entire bond issue is tracking $1,017,000 under budget to date. That includes paying for the extension of Bullpup Drive to Elm Street and from Elm to Lawrence Street.

“Right now, it looks like we are going to pick up the street extensions within the parameter of the budget and still remain under budget for the whole bond issue,” Supt. Paul Dorathy said. “We have one more major project to bid, which is the performing arts center. Anything we come in under budget with is money we could give back to the taxpayers. So it’s looking good right now for the projects and the taxpayers, because we may not have to spend the entire $22.9 million.”

Dorathy said the DLR Group architects are planning on sending the performing arts center plans to bid in January. He said the plans are taking longer than expected, but the designs might save the district some money.

On Monday, Penner presented the bids for the street extension to the board. Of the 14 bids, RD Johnson Excavating was approved as the low bidder for $579,999.99. The board unanimously approved the entire cost of the street project at $901,501.99.

“We got very good bids on the street,” Dorathy said. “We have 14 bids, which is wonderful competition for us, and that resulted in very competitive bids. We feel very good about that project.”

The other good news Monday was in regards to the new Baldwin Elementary School Primary Center. Penner said the project is tracking $1.3 million under budget. Work on the building itself began almost two weeks ago, after the district received the building permit from the city.

The district was waiting for approval from the state. Once that came, the city issued a building permit and work began Oct. 5.

“We are finally moving on the new elementary school,” Dorathy said. “We got approved by the state for that project and the city gave us our permit. Crews are working now, but weather has slowed us up a bit.”


Stacy Napier 8 years, 3 months ago

i'm sorry, but did i miss the public meeting on extending elm street through to lawrence ave, and bull pup drive?


Torch 8 years, 3 months ago

Good to know our grand children are saving $1,000,000. That will take the sting out of the other $22,000,000 they'll be paying for.


Bloggerboo 8 years, 3 months ago

It's also good to know that had we waited to do this, instead of being $1 million UNDER budget, we'd likely be twice that OVER budget.

Torch can't admit when he's wrong, so I won't hold my breath. He'll keep badmouthing everything even when it is obvious Baldwin City residents made the right decision. Or least one closer to right than wrong.


bc 8 years, 3 months ago

"i'm sorry, but did i miss the public meeting on extending elm street through to lawrence ave, and bull pup drive?"



jmyrick 8 years, 3 months ago

To this point, Elm Street is only being extended from Bullpup Drive to Lawrence Street. Don't confuse this with extending Elm Street from 11th Street to Bullpup, which would then go to Lawrence.

That continues to be the elephant in the room.


NanCrisp 8 years, 3 months ago

"Or least one closer to right than wrong."

You're waffling, Blogger.

Americans need to start realizing that the reason so many households, companies, and governments are hopelessly in debt is directly attributable to the belief that it is always better to spend money today than to save up and spend later, because everything will be more expensive later. This is an extremely fallacious and dangerous premise on which to base your spending decisions at any level.


Bloggerboo 8 years, 3 months ago

Nan, why don't you fill us all in with exactly when would have been a good time to build new schools and facilities? I am just going to take a wild guess that you would say never. If I am wrong about that, please tell us when would have been the perfect time to finally upgrade our facilities.

By the way, Americans are not in debt because of this concept of buy now while it's cheap. It's because they didn't have the money to cover what they were buying. Fortunately, Baldwin City does. I don't see anyone starving or out on the streets in BC, and we are getting much needed new facilities for half of what it would have cost us five years from now.


sparky 8 years, 3 months ago

I would prefer that the money that the voters so un-wisely passed for the bond issue be used to pay for what was on the bond issue. Is that too much to ask? Not other stuff that was added because we're under budget. If we're under budget, great, let's not use it and let the tax payers keep it. As I have stated on here more than once, I can't believe that we are paying on not one, not two, but THREE school bonds at the same time. I may be old fashioned, but I try to keep one mortgage at a time on my house.


Bloggerboo 8 years, 3 months ago

Personal home mortgages and school district bond issues are completely separate things, Sparky.

Public schools are non-profit organizations. Everything they take in comes from the state and/or small fees payed by parents of students. They have no way to make way to save up for something they need. Therefore, when serious upgrades or repairs are deemed necessary, a bond issue is the only other alternative. Many, many school districts have more than one bond issue active at any given time.

Finally, just to try to relate to what you said, good for you that you only have one mortgage on your home. However, the truth of the matter is many, many others in America have second mortgages, home-equity lines of credit, etc. that are essentially the same as having two mortgages on their home at once. It may not be the best or smartest thing...that depends on how they use their money and how they repay those things. But, they do exist.


Julie Craig 8 years, 3 months ago

I think that the point that is trying to be made here is that most of the items on the bond issue were not of a critical nature. We could have waited to pay off some of the old bonds first before diving in so deep. Most of us will have to agree to disagree with you Bloggerboo.


Bloggerboo 8 years, 2 months ago

"Most of us" GreatGazoo? Then why did "most of us" vote yes on the bond issue?


Julie Craig 8 years, 2 months ago

I don't call that slim margin "most" of Baldwin.


Bloggerboo 8 years, 2 months ago is a definition of "most":

Call it whatever you want, the "majority" of BC residents voted for the bond.

As for unnecessary, I guess that boils down to opinions. In my opinion, and the majority of voters, we needed a new primary center. All you have to do is visit the rotting, drafty, varmint-infested, moldy primary center we have now to realize this. And that is where the majority of the bond money is going.

If you don't agree that we needed new ball fields, try hosting a high school baseball or softball game on an undersized, marsh pit that is our current single option for a ball game. Either that or get rid of sports...the majority of BC residents agreed we needed new ball fields.

The junior high was in such a sad state of disrepair that water leaked into the building every time someone spit in its direction, destroying ceilings, walls, books, and materials and bringing that fun mold again to the building. Not to mention the worthless hvac in that building.

The list goes on, but those are the highlights. Clearly someone felt we "needed" improvements and new facilities and I happen to believe they were right.


Julie Craig 8 years, 2 months ago

I'm saying that the Capital Outlay tax dollars could have addressed the mold and leaks until the old bonds were paid off. Correct me if I'm wrong, but haven't the BJHS roofs been repaired numerous times? Isn't there some type of warranty on this?

As for hosting a baseball or softball tournament, that could also wait.

Besides, I didn't say the new facilities were unnecessary, I just said they weren't of a critical nature. Just agree to disagree.


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