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Jeremy Gaston/Herald-Chronicle
USD 420 board members and guests tour and hear updates from contractors July 10 at the track and field project at Jones Park. Contractors plan to have the field ready by Sept. 13.

OSAGE CITY—The USD 420 Board of Education continued its role of overseeing the facilities improvement projects at the July 10 regular meeting, which was preceded by a tour of the track and field site and the elementary remodeling.

McPherson Construction’s Eric Stueve, project superintendent, explained the field site and handed out a detailed layout of work items to be completed.

“If you look at the schedule, it looks tight, but it’s going to happen,” Stueve said. “The sod is tentatively scheduled for July 23.”

At Osage City Elementary School, much of the utility work has been completed. Sewer, HVAC, duct work and piping were in place, with drywall and some ceilings left to be installed. Work on the library addition was advancing, but would be completed after the start of the school year, and a temporary library is being set up in one of the classrooms.

Bills Sims of McPherson Construction and project architect Gary Hollar of Schaefer Johnson Cox Frey Architecture discussed project updates and change order requests.

“There’s some CORs we need to sign tonight to keep the project going,” Hollar said. “Various things they’ve already encumbered.”

The board approved the requests, totaling $62,037, for items including cabinets and sinks in the art room, laser grading at the football field, break-metal corners, carpet in six classrooms and various drywall aesthetic items.

Hollar presented a detailed plan for the gym and link between the middle school and elementary with costs estimated by McPherson Construction at 1.9 million, which did not reflect a cost savings anticipated by the board.

“The original plans were $1.9 million and the renovated plan is $1.9 million,” said board member Tammy Oliver. “I thought the whole point of coming up with another plan was to save money.”

The board considered options, including removing a new storage area outside of the new gym and a entrance foyer on the link.

“The whole thing Kenton (Cox) said was we’re going to save money,” Oliver said.

Board members pressed for an option closer to the anticipated $1.7 million mark.

“We’ll shoot for $1.7 million,” Hollar said.

The board opened the first meeting of the 2013-14 school year with the setting of organizational duties, electing Todd Peterson as board president, Ray Lauber as vice president, Brian Davies as Finance Chairman, Vickie Gragg as treasurer, Kathy Coen as clerk and Michael Coffman as attorney.

Other designations included Lauber as special education representative; Michael Pitts as recreation committee representative and elementary site council; Diane Scott at middle school site council; Cindy Cook as high school site council; Oliver as Osage County Community Foundation representative; Peterson as professional development board representative; Coen as freedom of information officer; Dan Fager as asbestos representative; Patty Brenner as food service representative; OFG Financial through Baybridge Administration as cafeteria plan carrier; all Osage City banks as official depositories; Blue Cross Blue Shield as district health provider; The Osage County Herald-Chronicle as official newspaper; and Hutton as hearing officer for free and reduced price meals application appeals, compliance coordinator and homeless child and educational services coordinator.

In other business, the board

• discussed the possibility of hosting the first football game at the practice field, in the event that sod was not ready for play at the new field, allowing three more weeks for the field to set.

• set a preliminary meeting to discuss teacher negotiations for 6:30 p.m. July 22.

• set petty cash limits at $350 for the district office and $200 for the elementary, middle and high schools.

• accepted the resignation of elementary vocal music teacher Jennifer Gilbert with liquidated damages, and approved the contract for Heather Ruby to fill the position.

• set a budget hearing for the next regular meeting at 7 p.m. Aug. 14.

• set the faculty staff luncheon for 11:30 a.m. Aug. 21. School will start for all students on Aug. 22.

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