Budget transfers for about $232,000 in new equipment purchases including a payloader and snow-plowing blade attachment, plus a mower with a 16-foot cutting width, will be requested from the Board of Education.
The purchase requests, to replace worn items, were reviewed Monday by the board’s buildings and grounds committee and will be “going forward for the next board meeting,” said committee chair Paul Hagerty. The full board meets again March 15.
The purchases would be “over and above this year’s money,” said Hagerty regarding the buildings and grounds department’s allotment in the current 2017-18 budget. The school district will “have to move money into there” and can “find lines where it is available” from the overall budget, said Assistant Superintendent for Operations and Management Robert Mezza Jr.
Cost estimates under state contract pricing include about $110,900 for a pay loader; $14,700 for a snow pusher/blade attachment; $106,900 for a mower. If approved next week by the board, the items could be available in about two to three months, said Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds Paul Rabbia after the meeting.
The school district currently owns two pay loaders that are primarily for snow removal and are “past their useful life...need to be replaced,” plus it leases another loader, Rabbia said. It also has two large mowers for 16-foot-wide cutting that similarly need to replaced, he commented.
Board member Lawrence Posselt noted efforts to develop an ongoing schedule for replacing equipment and cutting down on expenses relating to breakdowns along with maintenance issues. A “longer-range procurement plan in next year’s budget” is under discussion, Hagerty observed.
Board member Stephen Hampe referred to “a lot of problems in the past...band-aided over,” and said of the equipment replacement efforts, “this is something that will last.”