Director of Schools Bobby Cox informed members of the School Board that work on Morrison Elementary is almost finished.
Cox said, “My initial goal was we could get it all complete by June 30 but I think that’s a long-shot. A lot of work has been completed. They have been out there working. The grating has been complete on the softball field area. They moved some topsoil from there to the back side of the property where we are having the problem of water running off-site. They have seeded that, strawed that. We had a storm and it did do a little bit of erosion so they have to come back and fix that. The front part of the building where they had the collection pond has been filled in. That has been seeded. The front part of the building is OK as far as seeding and reseeding. Hopefully, grass will continue to grow there.”
Cox recommended reducing the retainage from $100,000 to $50,000. Retainage is a portion of the agreed upon contract price withheld until the work is essentially complete to assure a contractor or subcontractor satisfies all obligations and completes a construction project.
Cox said the recommendation from architect Paul McCall is to reduce the retainage to get the project completed. “My recommendation to the board is to reduce it down to $50,000. We are getting close to getting it closed out. I agree we should start reducing that retainage where the subs can collect the money for the work they have done, yet still keep us in position where we can make sure work is being done.”
Cox said officials conducted the one-year walk thru last week. “There are some items on a punch list there that needs to be addressed. Warranty items like minor crackng in the interior that they will have to look at they saw in the walk thru. The wash station on the E wing will have to have some work done to it. There are minor warranty items to address.”
Board chairman Bill Zechman said, “I recommend we give Bobby complete discretion and authority to reduce the retainage to zero as the work progresses.”
School system attorney Robin Phillips said, “I think that would be fine as we try to get this complete. I was out there at the site last Thursday. It’s really been a matter of trying to deal with the weather. We are just trying to be overly cautious. I know Bobby wants to be a good steward of taxpayer money as you all do. We want to make sure we are fair also to the contractor and we do things in a timely manner. Bobby has certainly been on top of things and has been in touch with people on the project daily.”
Cox said, “We want to make sure we get everything complete before we turn it completely loose.”
The motion to reduce retainage to $50,000 with the discretion of director of schools for the remaining $50,000 to take it to zero as work is completed passed 4-0.
Present at the meeting were School Board members Zechman, Tanya Bess, Scott Holmes and Jeff Lee. Absent were Michael Adamson and Linda Blair.