Explaining the District 518 capital outlayWORTHINGTON — Every year, the District 518 School Board approves a list of capital outlay projects and equipment purchases. This is normally approved in February, to be expended in the following fiscal year.
By: Dave Skog, District 518, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — Every year, the District 518 School Board approves a list of capital outlay projects and equipment purchases. This is normally approved in February, to be expended in the following fiscal year. At the Feb. 17 board meeting, the board approved Capital Outlay requests totaling more than $624,000. Generally, the final number is a result of prioritizing initial requests of $1 million to $1.5 million or more.
The funding the district receives comes from Operating Capital and Deferred Maintenance revenue. The actual amount received in both instances is based on a state funding formula that uses student enrollment and average building age calculations. In essence, the newer the buildings, the less funding you receive. District 518 expects to receive approximately $626,000 for the 2009-2010 school year.
Capital Outlay purchases are generally equipment purchases that cost more than $500 and would not be considered consumable supplies, as well as larger building maintenance and repairs that are not considered routine maintenance. The majority of the projects and purchases take place during the summer months in preparation for the upcoming school year. There are also unexpected things that come up during the school year that may be done on an emergency basis. The district tries to maintain a sufficient fund balance to address potential surprises.
Capital Outlay expenditures cover a wide range from building maintenance to furnishings to curriculum materials to extra-curricular equipment. Some of the items included in this years request are reroofing at the Middle School, parking lot resurfacing, track resurfacing, bleacher replacement, computer replacements and technology upgrades, classroom furniture, maintenance equipment, building repairs and maintenance, uniform replacement, security cameras, media resources, and musical instrument replacements.
The district has five buildings valued at more than $54 million, with 490,000 square feet to maintain. The buildings range in age from 1956 to 2001. The different curriculum areas are divided into a seven-year rotation, and nearly $150,000 is dedicated to curriculum needs each year. A total of 2,300 students and 200-plus staff are supplied with access to the necessary computers, smartboards, printers, copiers, desks and chairs needed to operate the school. Uniform and equipment replacement for more than 20 different extra-curricular teams are also on a rotating schedule ranging from team jerseys to wrestling mats to football helmets to volleyball standards.
Past Capital Outlay projects and purchases include numerous roofing projects, boiler and chiller replacements, playground equipment, sound system replacements, new curriculum series, carpet replacement, air conditioning, landscaping projects, painting projects, parking lot paving, sidewalk replacements, locker replacements, desks, chairs, shop equipment, lawn, snow and other maintenance equipment, ventilation upgrades, storage buildings, athletic field restorations, band and orchestra instruments, risers, staging, kilns, library books and much more.
Funds are also available for qualified Health and Safety and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) projects. The district has used Health and Safety funds in the past for asbestos abatement, purchase of portable defibrillators, fire alarm and fire sprinkler systems, energy efficient lighting replacements, and OSHA required equipment or repairs. ADA projects have included necessary elevators, handicap access doors, door handle upgrades, restroom modifications, ramps, and handicap bleacher accommodations.
In an effort to maintain the best possible quality of education that our residents expect, District 518 utilizes regular facility and equipment maintenance, curriculum and athletic replacement cycles, and continual monitoring and planning for the future. We hope that by doing this, we can address our needs in a consistent way and be fiscally responsible with the resources available.
Dave Skog is District 518’s director of management services.