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Developer Fees Bolster OJUSD Pockets

POSTED July 10, 2013 12:25 a.m.

The Oakdale Joint Unified School District is showing increased revenue from developer fees compared to last year, according to the district’s Chief Business Officer Susan Dyke.

She reported at the July 8 regular meeting of the OJUSD Board of Trustees that the fourth quarter was “nice and strong” and that the 2012-2013 total is up more than $400,000 compared to the prior year. The total for the 2012-2013 year amounted to nearly $571,000 with permits for 76 houses pulled, while the total for 2011-2012 was about $170,000 with permits for 21 houses pulled. Dyke also shared with the board the highpoint for developer fees collected, which was in 2004-2005, amounting to $5.3 million with 280 building permits pulled.

She said that $945,000 has been moved aside to prepare for building in the district, which will start with a new central kitchen.

In other business, Larry Mendonca, OJUSD Assistant Superintendent for Pupil Services and Facilities, provided an update to the board about the new facilities plans. The board voted in May to move forward with the new central kitchen project and multi-purpose room (MPR) project for Cloverland Elementary School, and later an MPR for Fair Oaks Elementary School. The MPRs will be of the same design.

Mendonca showed the board photos and schematics of the central kitchen plans. It is to be located at the northeast end of the Cloverland campus. He noted that it will not be very intrusive to Cloverland’s green space. He showed the kitchen floor plan and talked about how efficiency was considered in the design. There will also be extensive storage, freezer and cooler space, he said. He also showed a preliminary outside sketch of the building.

The central kitchen will cost approximately $1.1 million.

Mendonca went on to speak about the MPR location at Cloverland, noting that they would relocate some portables and swing sets, as well as remove some storage huts to make room for it. He showed an overview schematic of the MPR’s location and also discussed two potential locations for the MPR on the Fair Oaks campus. The two buildings will have one design, which is currently in development as the final building design must fit both campuses. They will be just under 5,000 square feet.

Approximately $1.2 million is budgeted for each MPR. Mendonca added that by going with an MPR at Fair Oaks, it will eliminate the need to expand the school’s library. Instead, they will be able to convert the school’s current cafeteria into a new library space, at a savings of approximately $100,000.

These projects will be paid for through previous building project savings totaling $2.8 million and developer fees of $1.6 million (saved over time) for a total available for use at this time of about $4.4 million.

Trustee Tina Shatswell initially expressed concern about not having sprinkler systems in the MPRs. The district’s construction consultant Ron Holcombe had shared that sprinklers are a very high cost and the threshold requirement to have them is 5,000 square feet. In response to her concern, he stated that the MPR is a “big, square box with a lot of openings” and a high ceiling and said that in terms of safety, having sprinklers in classrooms would be more desirable.

Trustee Bill Dyer also expressed concern about “neighbor relations” near the building projects, which was followed by some discussion with Holcombe about the procedures required by state law and how the district can handle notification.

Also in other business, the board adopted new language to the policy regarding dress and grooming, as well as new language and revisions to policy regarding bullying and eligibility requirements for eighth grade graduation.

These revisions were included in the new 2013-2014 Student Conduct Code, which was also unanimously approved by the board.

The next regular meeting of the OJUSD Board of Trustees will be at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 12 at Oakdale City Council Chambers, 277 N. Second Ave.

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