Greenport School District

Outdoor bleachers removed from proposed Capital Improvement Plan

Greenport School District officials have shaved roughly $475,000 off the district’s revised Capital Improvement Plan.

Following the district’s final bond-related work session held Wednesday, Aug. 21, board members trimmed the project down to approximately $18.1 million. However, Superintendent David Gamberg said if the project includes funds from the Capital Reserve, the total cost will be brought down to about $17.1 million.

A series of work sessions to reduce the total cost of the bond came as a result of the rejection of the proposed $23.8 million plan in June. A new vote is expected to go before Greenport voters in late fall.

The largest reduction came from the subtraction of outdoor bleachers for $335,000. While the entire structure will not be replaced, $50,000 will still be earmarked toward replacing the wooden bleachers with aluminum, Mr. Gamberg said Friday.

Board member Babette Cornine suggested the district remove the reconstruction of the playground, a roughly $140,000 item, and pursue a grant to cover the total. Board members unanimously agreed.

At a July work session, board member Sandy Martocchia suggested the Porter Marine Program appear as a second ballot proposition for voters.

The Porter Marine Program, tied to the initial $23.8 million bond project district residents rejected in June, is an engineering- and technology-focused initiative that would give students the opportunity to study marine industry trades in a hands-on manner.

Board president Daniel Creedon backed the decision to put the marine program as a second ballot proposition.

“Having it as a separate proposition would allow a vote on all these other things — lockers, maintenance,” he said.

If voters do not approve the separate marine program proposition at the vote, there are still funds within the main proposition to cover the refurbishment of the wood and autoshop and covert a portion of it into a marine shop, Mr. Gamberg said.

The Capital Improvement Project would reconfigure multiple rooms throughout the building: the existing elementary library would be converted to the home economics room, the existing high school office would become a regular classroom, the elementary library would be relocated to room 105, the existing business office would become the high school and guidance offices, and the existing chorus room would become the psychologists offices.

Ms. Swann and Mr. Creedon talked about moving the principal’s offices to the first floor of the building as a safety precaution and relocating the district offices into a separate and off-campus rental unit.

The five board members were in favor of keeping the home economics room in its current location and paying for ADA-compliant upgrades. All of those considerations require cost estimations from Tetra Tech Architects and Engineers associate Bill Wisbauer, Mr. Gamberg said.

The superintendent said it’s difficult to determine what will be in the final draft because some areas are still under consideration and need estimates from the architect.

“It’s like a domino effect,” he said. “There are still a lot of to-be-determined costs for moving the rooms around.”

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