In the City of Niagara Falls City School District, the Inventing Tomorrow Capital Projects plans are well under way and I am happy to provide the community with a status report on the initiative.
All our plans for construction have been submitted to the State Education Department (SED) and, as we have worked closely with SED, we anticipate a positive response to what has been designed.
We are committed to undertaking only what SED approves as eligible to be funded at our District’s maximum reimbursement rate of 98%. As you know, the remaining two percent will be funded through the State EXCEL grant; the District is guaranteed these funds.
Phase I of the projects will encompass work at Harry F. Abate, Henry J. Kalfas, Geraldine J. Mann, and Maple Avenue elementary schools, as well as LaSalle Prep and Gaskill Prep schools and Niagara Falls High School.
Work at LaSalle will begin with roof repair, and at NFHS with the athletic fields.
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math labs will also be created at the sites listed.
The District has submitted the athletic fields proposals to the Greenway Commission which will make a determination with respect to the required Declaration of Consistency with the Greenway Principles before handing it up to the Host Community Standing Committee for approval. The installation of synthetic turf and related work is the only part of the projects not aidable under SED and it is our plan to pay for it with Greenway Funds.
Additionally, Project Labor Agreements have been drafted to maximize the organization and professionalism of the work force.
In short, we plan to put shovels in the ground in spring. Phase II construction is scheduled to begin the following spring and will impact all of the remaining school campuses.
Again, I want to thank the community for its favorable vote in the referendum, which enabled us to proceed with this work, work which will not only address maintenance and repairs, but which will put Science, Technology, Engineering and Math labs in every school. These content areas are vital to our nation’s economy and national security. Our District is doing its part in keeping America strong.
We thank you, once again, for your support of this important endeavor.
We will keep you posted!