New Bids Required For Planned Monmouth Beach School Addition

first_imgBy Liz Sheehan MONMOUTH BEACH – The Monmouth Beach Board of Education will seek new bids this month for the construction of an all-purpose room after the bids received last week did not match the amount the board had set.Linda Considine, the interim business administrator for the district, said Tuesday that the lowest bid received last week for the project was $1.579 million, while the target set for the project was $1.30 million.The funds for the project will come from capital reserve, Superintendent Michael Ettore said Monday. The district, he said, has the funds because the school had no operating costs for a period of eight months following Super Storm Sandy, when students went to Oceanport, West Long Branch and Shore Regional High School.“We don’t need to ask the public for a nickel” to build the addition to the school, Ettore said.There are 250 students in the school, he said.In a presentation to the school board in 2015, Board President Kirk Ruoff said that in addition to the savings from the school closing for Sandy, a roof project, estimated to cost around $850,000, had instead come in at $370,000. The district, he said, had always transferred other small amounts to capital reserve and, counting in the savings from the period following Sandy and the lower costs than expected of the roof, there was approximately $1,700,000 in the district’s capital reserve account.After a feasibility study and input from the community, the administration and the PTO, the decision was made to build a multi-purpose room “for lunch, instructional use and community use,” he said, according to the minutes.Ettore said that the tables for lunch, which is now in the gym, had to be stored in that room which created a safety issue. He said when the tables were not in use they were behind mats and cut down on the space in the gym used for indoor activity.Not using the gym for lunch would also add instructional time there, he said, since now in the period before and after lunch it cannot be used while the tables are being set up and taken down.The proposal, as presented for bids by architects Kellenyi, Johnson, Wagner Architects, Red Bank, is listed on Construction Journal, a web site for contractors.It described the project as a 3,338-square-foot addition to the school to be built on the southeast corner of the existing building, with steps and a handicapped ramp where an existing playground, to be moved, now stands. A ramped hallway would connect the addition to the existing school.Asked how the community was informed about the plans for the addition, Ruoff said that the plans had been discussed for a long time at school board meetings and at PTO meetings.“Nobody ever shows up” for the school board meetings he said. “I guess they’re happy with how we are running things.”“I have not heard of that,” said Dona Zabe, whose twins are in the eighth grade at the school, when asked about the plan for the addition. She said she had not been aware of any problems with having lunch in the gym.Zabe said she didn’t see adding the new lunch room as an issue. “Go for it,” she said.last_img

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