More than half of a $150,000 allocation made to the Clinton City Schools at the end of last year will be used to replace a roof at the revamped College Street School facility, upon a request approved by the Sampson County Board of Commissioners earlier this week.
The Board of Commissioners considered a request from Clinton City Schools to utilize a portion of their previously allocated capital reserve funds to replace the College Street School roof. That allocation was made in December 2011, when the board voted to allocate monies to the county schools for roof repairs at the old Midway High School and to the city schools for brick and mortar and emergency situations.
At that time, no specific project was designated for the city schools funds. However, Clinton City Schools officials have now made an official request to utilize some of the money. Clyde Locklear, assistant superintendent for facility and finance, submitted the request that $80,000 of the $150,000 allocation be authorized for the replacement of the College Street School facility roof.
County commissioners signed off on it.
“As you recall some months ago, when you approved expenditure for the roof at Midway, you also set aside $150,000 for similar-type improvements at Clinton City Schools,” said county manager Ed Causey. “This is the first request, $80,000 of that money to work on roof replacement at College Street School. You’ve already set aside that.”
In December 2011, the Board of Commissioners approved both the city and county school systems for just over $600,000 in combined facility improvement funds, including Sampson County Schools in the amount of $453,000 and $150,000 to Clinton City Schools. While the old Midway High roof was identified as top priority by county school officials, city school officials had a list of items that could benefit from funding.
The December allocation to the school systems was approved from capital reserve funds following extensive discussion by county commissioners.
The reserve draws from three main sources of revenue: A 1983 half-cent sales tax divided 30 percent to the school capital reserve, 70 percent to the county’s general fund; a 1986 half-cent sales tax divided 60 percent to the reserve, 40 percent to the general fund; and an annual allocation of property taxes of $676,000, the Vocational Education Clerical funds.
At that time, county manager Ed Causey recommended that the county’s most critical need — the Midway High School roof — be immediately funded from the existing school capital reserve, with remaining capital needs for the school systems to be considered and evaluated after a comprehensive infrastructure improvement plan was completed.
Commissioners said it was unfair for one school system to receive a sizable chunk of money and not allocate anything for the other school system, prompting the approval of a $150,000 payment to the city schools.
The infrastructure improvement plan was subsequently completed and capital reserve maintenance accounts for long-term facilities upkeep established as part of the 2012-13 budget. Those funds currently total $370,000, encompassing $150,000 for the county, $112,500 for Sampson County Schools, $56,250 for Clinton City Schools and $56,250 for Sampson Community College.
Those funds are not being touched with the vote, but Clinton City Schools will still have $70,000 of its prior $150,000 allocation remaining.
According to Locklear, who was not at the county board’s Monday meeting but detailed the request in a Sept. 13 correspondence, the roof to be replaced is approximately 9,000 square feet. The facility, he said, was last re-roofed in 1996 during a renovation to make the facility the administrative offices for the Board of Education.
While the administrative offices have now been moved, the Board of Education has recently completed a renovation of the facility to facilitate three N.C. Pre-Kindergarten classrooms, during which the roof was evaluated. It is vital that the investment in that facility be protected by ensuring there is a quality roof, city school officials said.
“The roof is currently out of warranty and has several openings in the single ply roofing membrane which are allowing water to enter,” Locklear stated. “Additionally, the shingled roof section is showing considerable age and has only a very limited remaining life. It was determined the public interest was best served by replacing the roof now instead of making repairs, which would only provide limited problem resolution for a short amount of time.”
The roof replacement will include removal of all old roofing; investigation and repair of damaged roof decking; application of new shingle and single ply roofing materials; and evaluation of a gutter and downspout system to manage the removal of water from the roof.
Those repairs, coming on the heels of previous renovations to the facility this year, will help protect the local investment.
“The Board of Education hopes to move forward with this project in an effort to protect the recent facility renovations,” Locklear stated.
Commissioner Jarvis McLamb made a motion to approve the request. The vote was unanimous.
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.