School board approves renovations for Juniata County School District

MIFFLINTOWN – A $16,320,817 project has been approved to upgrade aging facilities in the Juniata County School District.

During a Thursday meeting, the school board of directors voted in favor of the Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreement presented in past meetings by Reynolds Energy Services. Renovations will include improvements to the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems at East Juniata High School, Juniata High School and Tuscarora Junior High School. The agreement also includes a district-wide monitoring system.

“We spent a lot of money on this renovation,” said Director John Noss.

However, he explained that the project will save the district a significant amount of money over building new facilities.

The board also approved the beginning stages of a shop addition planned for EJHS. According to plans previously presented by Reynolds, the shop will be 12,000 square feet and expand the area used by the building trades, agriculture and industrial arts classes. A budget of $2,200,000 was set during the meeting.

The board awarded the contract for architectural services for the shop addition to J.P.D. Architects LLC, in the amount of $172,000 and reimbursable expenses. Construction management services will be headed by Reynolds Construction Management Inc., at a cost of $131,000. The companies will work with administration to design the addition.

Amid other changes within the district, the meeting agenda recommended contract renewals for Business Manager Richard Meily II and Superintendent Richard Musselman.

Director Ray Page said neither of the contracts required immediate action and board members were not notified of the intent to renew the contracts until about one week ago.

“There has been no discussion with the board,” he said.

For those reasons, he said he planned to vote in opposition if either motion were brought to the table.

With a board split about half and half, motions made by Randy Dressler to table action on both contracts failed.

Employment contracts for Meily and Musselman, effective from July 1, 2014, to June 30, 2017, were approved by 5:4 votes. Directors William Book, Melvin Brubaker, Christine Shadel, Joseph Shearer and Danny Snyder voted in favor of both renewals. Dressler, Glenda Leister, Noss and Page voted in opposition.

In other new business, the board:

Approved Alyssa M. Wittle as JCSD athletic director/Title IX compliance officer, effective Dec. 16, at an annual salary of $30,000.

Approved an agreement of affiliation with the Mifflin-Juniata Career and Technology Center Practical Nursing Program for 2014.

Approved the purchase of 60 Chromebooks to use as labs at elementary schools at a cost of $280 each.

Accepted the donation of surgical instruments from Lewistown Hospital for the district’s health professions program.

Approved Tremco Incorporated to perform roof inspections at a cost of $3,900.

Approved M&J Paving and Services to perform snow removal at Tuscarora Valley Elementary School for the 2013-2014 school year. This company replaces low-bidder Burkholder Lawn Care, which has withdrawn its bid.

Approved the Enginuity to install heating, cooling and vacuum systems in the JHS construction trades building. The project will cost $85,450.

Approved advertising and soliciting proposals for a Model 45004 Ventrac diesel tractor, Kabota engine, 72-inch finish mower, V-blade, 49-inch manual adjust terra rake, ballpark groomer for primary use at East Juniata High School.

Approved the purchase of a MiniMag floor scrubber at a cost of $7,785.04. This equipment will be used throughout the district.

Approved the sale of a Massey Ferguson 50 with a six-foot Woods mower.

Approved financial reports, a listing of bills for payment and the auditor’s report for the year ended June 30.

Approved the purchase from U.S. Foods of eight mobile heated holding cabinets, at a cost of $18,797.76; one four-well hot food station, at a cost of $2,478; one mobile heated holding cabinet, at a cost of $3,080.16; seven drop-in hot wells, at a cost of $12,579.49; and seven cords, at a cost of $468.16.

Approved Justin Fraker, Earl Shank and Homer Smith as contracted school bus and van drivers for the duration of the 2013-2014 school year.

Approved the JCSD 2014-2015 school year calendar.

Approved establishing a special education teaching position at EJHS.

Approved the retirement of JHS custodian James Ernest, effective Nov. 27.

Approved William L. Landis as a JHS custodian, at an hourly rate of $20.20, effective Nov. 28.

Approved Erich J. Graybill as a substitute teacher, Jessica L. Lucas as a substitute LPN and Valerio A. Rivera as a substitute custodian.

Approved conference requests for Angela Sieber and Daniel R. Smith to attend the iPad Summit on Dec. 16 in Harrisburg.

Approved a Health Occupations Students of America student activity account.