More than 100 projects slated for county schools

May 04, 2006|by KAREN HANNA

From coating portable ramps with nonslip epoxy to replacing ceilings, lights and carpeting, Washington County Public Schools staff and subcontractors will be busy this summer.

The school system is taking on more than 100 projects totaling almost $6.5 million, according to Michael Peplinski, supervisor of operations and maintenance, and a list provided by Superintendent Elizabeth Morgan.

"It's a logistics nightmare, but we're going to get as many done as we can," Peplinski said Wednesday, one day after presenting a list of projects to the Board of Education.

Summer work projects will take place at all but one of the county's schools, Peplinski said. Salem Avenue Elementary School, which recently was renovated, has no work scheduled, he said.


According to the list provided by Morgan, the projects range in cost from $150 to coat a portable ramp at Smithsburg High School to $995,000 for asbestos tile removal, and ceiling and light replacement at Williamsport High School.

Last summer, the facilities department managed only 38 projects, Peplinski said Wednesday. Since then, the department has hired two new project managers and three new trades workers, he said.

The department plans to hire another three trades worker this summer, Peplinski said.

While many of the projects will be handled by subcontractors, Peplinski said some of the work will be done by school employees.

At Tuesday's meeting, Morgan praised the facilities department for tackling so many projects across the county based on the department's analysis of schools' needs. She called the list an "even distribution of projects."

According to Peplinski, funding for summer projects is concentrated in the Smithsburg, Williamsport, Hancock and Boonsboro areas.

"Those are the schools that have been renovated last," Peplinski said. "The money's going to the old schools, exactly right."

According to Peplinski, the projects have been timed so they will not delay the opening of school, and contractors will be penalized for late work.

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