Cheektowaga-Sloan schools seek building improvements - The Buffalo News
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Cheektowaga-Sloan schools seek building improvements

Roofs, boilers and windows will likely top the wish list of items to be replaced in the Cheektowaga-Sloan school district when a building condition survey is presented to the public next month.

Superintendent Andrea Galenski said a team of designers and engineers from Young and Wright Architects recently inspected the district’s four buildings to determine the greatest needs from a safety standpoint.

“They have pretty much walked every square inch of each building,” Galenski said at Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting.

The designers will compile a list of necessary improvements from which the School Board will determine the most important items to address.

“The issue is we do have needs,” said district business manager Wayne W. Drescher. “Roofs, boiler systems, windows, etc.”

Any capital improvement project requires voter approval. Drescher said Cheektowaga-Sloan voters tend to approve projects that are cost-neutral to the community, and the upcoming project can meet that objective.

To minimize cost, Drescher recommended the district tap into a capital reserve that was established by referendum in 2006 and only has a 10-year window during which the funds could be used.

In addition, Drescher noted that the state Education Department reimburses school districts nearly 90 percent of every dollar spent on needs and safety projects.

“We can maximize that aid to create a no-cost improvement plan,” Drescher said, adding that the district would also benefit from new, energy-efficient windows and boilers installed during the project.

Young and Wright’s building condition survey will be completed by July 31, with a public presentation at the board’s Aug. 19 meeting.

Galenski hopes the School Board can decide quickly because there is a long wait time with the state education department on capital projects.

Drescher said a referendum passed by January would allow the project to begin in summer 2016.

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