The Riverhead Board of Education has approved using $41,200 from the district’s repair reserve fund for various capital improvement projects at the high school, Roanoke Avenue and Phillips Avenue elementary schools.
The proposed projects at the high school include: repairing paint for the gym’s partitions and repairing the fuel storage tank vent. The monies are also earmarked to repair fencing and screening at Roanoke Avenue and Phillips Avenue elementary schools.
During the school board’s regular meeting Tuesday, Superintendent Nancy Carney gave a presentation about how the repair reserve fund, which voters approved in 2011 and is funded with the district’s end-of-year surplus, is designed to “supplement” the ongoing construction as “things come up.”
The school board unanimously approved the proposal following Tuesday’s public hearing.
School board watchdog Laurie Downs criticized the district for waiting until after the new gym at the high school was completed to propose painting the dividers.
“When they set up their plan for the gym, apparently they didn’t look at everything they said they were going to look at because [painting the dividers] should have already been taken care of — it shouldn’t be something put in at the last minute,” Ms. Downs said. “You should have known [the dividers] didn’t look good.”
Ms. Carney responded to Ms. Downs’s comments by saying it wasn’t determined that the dividers needed repairs until after construction at the gym had been completed.
“After everything was painted, we looked at the gymnasium and said: ‘The partitions really need to be taken care of so the end product will be what we want it to be,'” Ms. Carney said.
Last August, the school board approved using $1.7 million for various upgrades at the high school, including replacement of lighting and crumbling concrete in the back plaza courtyard, repair of the south and student parking lots and replacement of a damaged ceiling and lighting in the cafeteria.
In March, the board also approved using $456,000 from the repair reserve account to pay for other projects at the high school, including paint, interior and exterior door-exit devices, HVAC rooftop temperature controllers and a hot-water mixing valve. Other monies were allocated for the middle school’s boiler room valves and boiler section, Roanoke Avenue Elementary School’s gym floor and flooring for five classrooms at Aquebogue Elementary School.