District plans construction projects | TahoeDailyTribune.com

District plans construction projects

William Ferchland, Tahoe Daily Tribune

Ranging from replacing exterior walkways to theater improvements, eight Lake Tahoe Unified School District schools are on a list for summer construction projects.

Money, currently $9 million, from approved measures and propositions, including Prop. 47 from last year, is allowing the district to remain on track with projects to improve facilities.

In addition, the district is eligible for $3 million from state reimbursements.

Planning and perhaps construction is targeted for Meyers and Sierra House elementary schools.

Meyers, built in 1966, is the oldest site not yet modernized, according to Steve Morales, district facilities manager.

Improvements include boiler systems, electrical distribution, communications as well as enhancements to the cafeteria, administration area, library, data distribution, special services and the workroom.

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Morales expects to go to the the board for approval to seek a contractor on April 8

Modernization for the classroom wings is scheduled for summer 2004.

For Sierra House, the newest school in the district, improvements include replacing exterior walkways, about 600 square feet, and planning for modernization construction in 2004.

Morales when funds are available, they’re planned for use.

“The district has been very active in planning, bidding and expending the funds,” Morales said. “Due to the diligence with which the projects have been processed we have received maximum allowable reimbursements for our state approved projects.”

Ironically both schools, Sierra House and Meyers, have been rumored to be on the top of the list for possible closure. Due to consecutive years of declining enrollment coupled with a current state budget crisis, the school board voted on $2.7 million worth of cuts for next year.

The board also said plans will be made for a possible school closure targeted for 2005. It is unknown at this time what school will have its doors permanently closed.

Until that decision is made, the district is moving ahead with planned improvements.

“We still have these improvements that are necessary,” Morales said.

To be eligible for 50 percent of the total state funds, a contract must be awarded to a contractor by May 2004, Morales said.