Thu07242014

Last updateWed, 19 Nov 2014 8pm

   2014 39.95 HSD w VIDor PH-Banner2-500-x-125

CB School Board moves forward with relocation tasks

The Colonial Beach School Board met on Feb. 18 in the high school cafeteria to approve upcoming tasks for the relocation of the elementary school campus to the high school, including negotiating prices for a relocation engineer and approval of the return of the mod pods still at the elementary campus.

The elementary students are currently being housed at the Oak Grove Baptist Church since a fire ravaged the vacant two-story building, rendering many of the other buildings and a majority of the campus unsafe.
To date, the School has not received any word from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) or Virginia State Police, who are investigating the cause of the fire to determine if it was arson or accidental.

The school board has held off on the approval of hiring a site engineer to oversee the move of the elementary school campus, to discuss negotiating a lower price.

The RFP (request for proposal) officially closed on Feb.18, with only one response from Jeff L. Howeth Engineering from Tappahannock.

During her Superintendent’s Report, Kathleen Beane asked the board for their approval to secure his services in the amount of $30,000. Half will cover engineering surveying, and the other half for construction management. Howeth would be responsible for all procurement compliance for all phases of the project, as well as obtaining permits, writing bid documents and coordinating sub-contractors within the construction project.

School Board Chairman Tim Trivett stated that although the approval was on the agenda, he wanted to wait until after the Executive Session to approve. Trivett said he felt that there was a legal issue the board needed to discuss.

After returning from closed session, the board made a conditional approval, based on negotiating a lower contract price.

In the meantime, the board has approved the return of the mod pods, which will save the School around $10,000 a month in rent and utilities. This action opened the door for staff to begin the removal of supplies from the mod pod units.

Despite the mod pods being located within the collapse zone, the School has obtained permission to enter the buildings, but only under the supervision of fire officials.  

The mod pods are tentatively set for removal on March 1, although the School will have 30 days from the time they contact the rental company and request the removal. “Materials will need to be packed up and moved, before these buildings can be dismantled and moved,” Beane told the board; adding, “The Leadership Team is working on storing these items in the ‘Primary building’ upon your approval of the return of the mod pods.”

The board also voted to use First Call for emergency clean-up services at the elementary campus. Cleanup includes: clearing of fire debris of the “fall down” covering the stairs; removal of the door to gain access to the boiler room; disposal of any unknown chemicals found on site; pumping out the water to gain access to the boiler; inspection of the boiler; removal of the equipment, including drums; and disposal of any fuel that is found.

Due to the large amount of water used while putting out the fire and recent precipitation, the basement of the two-story building has become flooded. This water (and any fuel from the boiler) will need to be removed and disposed of, and the area cleaned to ensure environmental safety.

Lastly, the company will work to flush the storm drains to avoid contamination of surrounding drains and restrict any contaminants from entering either Monroe Bay or the Potomac River. Estimated costs start at around $12,000.

School Board member Michelle Payne reported to the board that to date, fundraisers for the “school fire fund” have netted a monetary value of over $45,000 and that supplies are still coming in steadily, despite the School’s public “Thank You” letter explaining that no more donations are needed at this time.

Wednesday, Feb. 26, King George Schools’ faculty will play Colonial Beach Schools’ faculty in a basketball game fundraiser at 7:00 p.m. in the CB High School gym. Tickets are $5.00 each to get in. Concessions will be sold, and all proceeds go to Colonial Beach Schools.

Riverboat on the Potomac is hosting a band benefit featuring the Fabulous Hubcaps on Friday, Feb. 28. Doors will open for dinner at 6:00 p.m., and the band will start at 8:00 p.m. The cost is $40 per person, which includes both dinner and the dance.

On April 5, the Eagles will hold an all day event at their facility, which will be open to the public. They will have a meatless dinner for sale, a 50/50 raffle, a silent auction and a band for entertainment.

Payne also recognized the American Legion, which presented a $500 check, and its ladies auxiliary, who donated $100.

—Linda Farneth

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