PO BOX F | 4238 State Highway 8
New Berlin, NY 13411
P: 607.847.7500
F: 607.847.9194
board of education
about the district
FAQ: Building project
What does the district hope to accomplish with this building project?

With the school building having nearly two decades of continuous service, there is a need to ensure that the school’s facilities and grounds are safe places in which to learn and work. Like your home, certain features of the school building and grounds, such as roofs and HVAC equipment, have life spans. As time goes by, these features can become less efficient, lead to problems or just wear out. In addition, the district is always looking at ways to make operation of its facilities more efficient as technologies and materials change.

Why is this building project vote in December and not in May in conjunction with the school budget vote?

It can take more than a year for the  New York State Education Department to approve school building projects after they are passed by voters. In addition, the bidding process can also be lengthy. Unadilla Valley is opting to put this project before voters now because the district would be in a better position to ensure any impacts on the learning environment are eliminated or minimized. Putting it out for  vote now, when the designs and plans are established according to current cost estimates, could also help keep the project under budget and less susceptible to inflationary pressures.  

How much will this project cost and how will it impact taxpayers?

This project is expected to cost about $10 million and that is what the district is asking voters to authorize when the polls are open from noon to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 13
Because this project is being funded mostly through state aid, with the balance being assumed by a capital reserve fund, there is no anticipated impact on the tax levy. 

Didn’t the district just complete a building project? Why do we need another one now?

The district completed a $12.8 million building project in the fall of 2017. That project was the result of a vote in Spring 2015. However, public votes are just one of many steps for a capital project. After a successful vote, the New York State Education Departments still has to approve the plans and the bidding process can also be a lengthy. Several years ago initiated a strategic plan to shore up and improve our facilities, and this project is an important step in that process. Doing the work in multiple projects allows the district to minimize disruption to the learning environment and take advantage of as much state aid as possible.

What was accomplished with the last project?

The last project included renovations to the  Ag/Tech Wing and the addition of a greenhouse. LED lighting was upgraded in several areas of the building. HVAC upgrades and new equipment was installed to service multiple areas. Carpet and flooring was replaced in some classrooms, the libraries, some offices and the auditorium. The pool area was improved. Two storage buildings were added to the bus garage area, and new windows were installed in much of the school building. A new public address system and other upgrades enhanced safety and improved the district’s technology infrastructure. 

What are the components of this proposed building project?

The project that the UV Board of Education is putting to a public vote includes the following components:
Replacing heating and ventilation that wasn’t completed in the 2015 project (approximately one-third of the remaining classrooms, as well as the cafeteria, library, main gym and auditorium)
  • The remaining doors (fire towers) that weren’t completed in our most recent project
  • Beginning the roof replacement cycle with the roof over the pool
  • Beginning our long term maintenance of the exterior brick and mortar of the building (cleaning and re-pointing)
  • Replacing the south parking lot, as it is in the worst shape
  • An electronic sign in front of the school
  • Upgrading to LED lighting in more areas of the building and on the football field
  • Upgrading the stage and theater lighting in the auditorium to LED
  • Upgrading the auditorium sound system and microphones
  • Replacing all drinking fountains, including some with water bottle fillers key locations
  • Repair and replace the drainage for the football field and the track
  • Painting and lining of the track along with some field event relocations (shot put, discus, pole vault, and add steeplechase)
  • Re-sodding the football field after fixing drainage (all natural grass).

    Is the district planning to put in an artificial turf field with this project?

    No. The district is not considering an artificial turf field with this project. While the football field is in need of improvement, particularly in the area of drainage in and playing surface, the project would involve re-sodding what is now a field of weeds with natural grass. After the field is sodded, a maintenance plan will be established to ensure the field remains in good condition for many years to come. 

    What happens if the project is not approved on Dec. 13?

    If the project is not approved on Dec. 13, the Unadilla Valley Board of Education will reconvene to consider its options moving forward. Those options could include reworking the project and putting it out to for a second vote. Because some of the project involves replacing aging features of the building, such as a section of the roof, and HVAC units, not replacing them now could put the district in a position where they may need to be replaced if the features fail or become unsafe. If that happens, the district may not be able to tap currently available streams of state aid, which would then place the burden of replacement on the district’s existing revenue, including the tax levy.

    Are there future building projects planned?

    Unadilla Valley administrators, staff and the Board of Education continually evaluate school facilities. The district tries very hard to plan as far in advance as possible when it comes to capital projects to ensure that the impact on the tax levy is minimized and the school’s facilities and grounds are kept safe, modern and efficient. But before planning for the next phase can begin, it is important for the district to focus on the proposed project. There will be future public meetings where potential building projects will be discussed.
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