Salem school board?approves $204K bid for stadium entrance

SALEM- The Salem school board Tuesday night approved a bid for the Reilly Stadium entrance project.

The board approved a bid of $204,506 from Kreidler Construction under the recommendation of David Sommers & Associates LLC. The board received seven bids, with the highest of $235,000.

According to board member Steve Bailey, the project is in conjunction with the Salem Preservation Society, which has currently raised approximately $155,000 to $160,000. He said the school district will cover the difference for the project out of permanent improvement funds, with $100,000 allotted in the Building and Grounds Budget for this year, for items such as parking, handicap spaces and moving the discus area.

The project is scheduled to be completed before the first football scrimmage in August, Bailey said.

Five-year forecast: The board approved the five-year financial forecast submitted by Treasurer Jim Wilson projecting a cash balance of $887,216 this year and a deficit of $206,385 in 2014.

Wilson explained that the forecast is still in flux since the state funds in the governor’s biennial budget has not been approved. The district has seen a decrease of $2.2 million in state funding the past two years, but the district could gain as much as $900,000 next year depending on what version of the budget passes, he said.

Bailey noted that the board is working on school budgets for next year, but are waiting for the governor’s plan to be finalized.

“Even though [the forecast] looks bad now, (ultimately) it may not be as bad as it seems since there are so many unknowns,” he said.

Hannah E. Mullins tuition: The board approved a $1,000 increase in tuition for the Hannah E. Mullins School of Practical Nursing effective the 2013-2014 school year. The change will include pre-enrollment costs under the umbrella of tuition so that they will be covered by funding sources and Federal Student Aid.

Personnel: The board hired Gary Bayda as bus mechanic effective May 16; DeAnn Russell as part-time office assistant at Hannah E. Mullins School of Practical Nursing, effective May 8; and Jennifer Andres as third-grade teacher and Athena Spinell as Title I reading and math teacher, both for the 2013-2014 school year. The board also approved continuing contracts to teachers Michele Pieniazek, Chelsea Greene and Jamie Kemats.

Kevin Howell can be reached at