The 40-some-year old bleachers in the Emmetsburg High School gym have stood the test of many years of E-Hawk and Lady E-Hawk glory on the basketball courts and wrestling mats. However, age and use have taken their toll on the structures, prompting the Emmetsburg School Board to discuss plans for the bleachers during its Feb. 20 board meeting.
Emmetsburg School Superintendent John Joynt explained to the board that he had obtained a quotation of costs from FEH Architects of Sioux City, the firm that developed and oversaw the construction of the new middle school, gym and auditorium for the district. According to Joynt, FEH would develop specifications for new bleachers in the high school gym, submit the plans for state approval and let the bids. FEH's proposal for services was estimated to range between $6,000 and $8,000.
"Our best estimated, just in some preliminary discussions, has been that new bleachers would cost in the range of around $95,000," Joynt told the board. "If we are to proceed, we would need to have the new bleachers installed by mid July to allow for the gym floor to be refinished on a timely basis."
"And, I have been contacted by a local salvage contractor who would be willing to come in and remove the old bleachers completely at no cost to the district," Joynt added. "He did this over at Spencer not too long ago."
School Board President BJ Schany asked if the bleachers were the most pressing issue at the time.
"The bleachers we have, elderly people really have a hard time getting up into them and they're really not up to Code," Joynt replied. "They're not up to standards. Next Fall we should start thinking about setting up a fund for projects. We should look at West Elementary and fixing up the ventilation system, a ticket booth and concession stand at the top of the hill, things like that."
Joynt noted that a bleachersalesman had inspected the structures recently and noted they were constructed with angle iron. Current code-compliant bleachers utilize channel iron. "But, of course, he's trying to sell us bleachers, too," Joynt added.
"I guess I'm just not comfortable spending $8-10,000 on a non-priority project for someone just to administrate it," Schany said of the FEH?proposal.
"I'd like some more information also," Kibbie chimed in. "That seems like a lot of money for putting out bids."
"Why don't we have the Facilities Committee look into this," Schany asked. The Facilities Committee is comprised of board members Tammy Naig, Rick Brennan and Schany.
"If we're going to do this, we need to do it right," Kibbie said. "I'd move to have the Facilities Committee review this and make a recommendation to the board," The board approved the motion on a unanimous vote.
In other business, the board took action on several personnel issues. Resignations were accepted from Mitch Mueller as Technology Administrator, Dean King as Transportation Director effective June 29; and Pat Swanson as Board Secretary/Business Manager effective Dec. 21, 2012.
Also approved was the resignation of Melissa Birkey from her positions as Girls Basketball Chaperone/Official Book keeper, and a one-year of absence from her positions as Seventh Grade Volleyball coach for the 2012-13 season due to maternity leave., All resignations were accepted and approved. Marc Riley was also approved as a volunteer golf coach.