You'd think the Board agendas, with their Consent agendas and Action Items, might not be all that interesting. But I give the Board much credit with fleshing out the agendas by having links to information about them. Like this one:
"Establish a line item budget of $2.5 million for interim sites. Monies will be drawn from the BEX III Program Reserve."
Now this item didn't surprise me all that much until I read the whole thing. Here's the gist of it:
"The BEX III budget did not have a specific line item budget for miscellaneous work at interim school sites to house staff and students during construction and renovation of the BEX III schools. This motion provides a line item budget of $2.5 million for interim sites. Monies will be drawn from the BEX III Program Reserve.
Interim schools covered under this budget line item include Columbia, Lincoln, Boren and the portable campus at Nathan Hale High School."
Now this strikes me as odd that they wouldn't have put a line item for this given how many projects they want to do at once. I knew they needed to help Hale, seeing as how Hale will stay put and have the work done around them. But I didn't know that Columbia (New School), Lincoln (Hamilton) and Boren (Sealth) were that bad off, particularly Lincoln. But there's more:
"After the Board approved transfers totaling approximately $14.4 million to the project budgets to cover higher than expected escalation at the November 14, 2006 meeting, approximately $5.6 million remained in the Program Reserve. Upon Board approval of the above motion, approximately $3.1 million will be left in the Program Reserve."
Really? I knew that the $20M Reserve fund had already been dipped into for the Hamilton/New School projects (although Facilities has talked for years about construction escalation costs so why this would be unexpected isn't clear) but I missed that they have taken nearly all of it for these two projects. Now they are taking another $2.5M and leaving $3.1M.
Wow. That's not much this early on.
That does explain Facilities rush earlier this year to get the Board to take each project's 15% contingency and lump them together into one pot (which they approved). Facilities needed to be able to have another reserve fund because this one is almost gone.
So cross your fingers, Hale, New School, Hamilton and Denny/Sealth (especially Denny as you will likely be the last to be renovated) - you might have to cut back in your project if some other project eats up these reserve dollars.