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Jackson BOE To Engage Negotiations On Security Project Work

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Jackson BOE To Engage Negotiations On Security Project Work

The Jackson County School Board voted Thursday night to allow its architect to engage negotiations with the lowest bidder for a system-wide secure school entrance project.

That after the prices of work came in almost double than what was pre-approved. School Board Chair Mark Brown said the projects need to move forward considering the current entrances.

“We’ve been looking at this for a long time,” Brown said. “What amounts to is when you go to the Elementary School you go straight to the hall way. When you go to the high school, you go straight to the cafeteria. This is going to eliminate all that.”

Director of Schools Kristy Brown said the project was to be paid through federal COVID money, but the school system could get a better price if it used its general fund. Brown said using federal funding can add up to 20 percent to the project cost since the contractor has to complete extensive paperwork mandated by the government. Brown said she would schedule a meeting with the architect and contractor to discuss the issue next week.

“We’ve talked about redoing the high school for 20 years probably,” Brown said. “So I do feel like making a move on this is the right thing to do if we can. This does include the access control where people come in and scan to get in. Anybody that walks into the school is going to be wired to our cameras to capture people coming in going at a single entry that has been recommended. I think it is a good project, but trying to get this down to spend our money for the best that we can get with what we have is a good thing.”

Also included in the bids were roof projects for Dodson Branch School and Gainesboro Elementary School. School Board Member Amanda Taylor suggested separating the projects and using a mixture of federal and local money.

“Would it be possible to use the ESSER (federal money) for the Gainesboro Elementary School roof and then not use federal for the rest of it if you are looking at a 20 to 30 percent savings?” Taylor said.

Brown said federal funding, local funding or a mixture would be three options that she brings to the meeting to discuss. Brown also warned school board members of the time restraints on spending the federal money and having the projects completed by a certain date issued by the government.


The post Jackson BOE To Engage Negotiations On Security Project Work appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.