Maintenance & Operation
Why does the district have to pass bonds for preventive maintenance when it has a (2017-18) $663.9 MM budget?
The district's (2017-18) $663.9 MM budget goes toward the following categories:
87.9% of $663.9 MM goes toward our 10,000+ employees' salaries and benefits ($583.8 MM)
8.5% of $663.9 MM goes toward campus and department supplies and materials, fuel for buses, and appraisal district fees ($56.6 MM)
3.5% of $663.9 MM goes toward utilities such as natural gas, electricity, and water ($23.5 MM)
91% of the $609.2 MM bond proposal goes towards new schools and renovations/improvements to 61 campuses. The funds within our $663.9 MM operating budget are allocated towards salaries and benefits that cover costs associated with minor ongoing preventive maintenance items. Major items such as HVAC repairs, flooring, roofs, foundation leveling, CTE support space, chillers, lighting retrofits, and other campus components are designated through bond funds.
How does the Maintenance Department determine when an item needs to be repaired versus replaced?
Ongoing maintenance happens as required. With all items, we currently monitor the age of the equipment, the amount of repairs needed using in-house labor, contract costs and finally, what is happening with the equipment during preventive maintenance inspections. This includes items such as A/C equipment, boilers, hot water heaters, carpet, gym floors, intercom systems, roofs, painting, kitchen equipment, emergency generators and water softeners.
Does the Maintenance Department have to prioritize items?
Yes, we prioritize annually which allows us to provide and document the most up-to-date the information.
Provide some examples of the long-term operating costs that would be reduced by updating older schools as part of the 2017 bond.
Examples of long-term operating costs that would be reduced by updating our campuses include:
Flooring – Replacing worn VCT surfaces with newer vinyl and LVT products removed the costs of stripping and waxing annually and the mid-year recoat of wax. This is about $2.75 per sq. ft. in annual materials cost saving.
Lighting Replacements - This will provide approximately 30% in cost savings per campus in electricity costs.
Life Safety Component Replacements - These updates have relieved the emergency repair modification costs when an old system goes down at approximately $15,000 per campus.
Chiller and controls updates will relieve about 10%-15% of the electricity costs per campus.
Boiler updates will relieve about 20%-25% of the natural gas costs per campus.
Provide some examples of things the district has done to reduce costs and introduce energy savings.
Examples of district initiatives to reduce operating costs and introduce energy savings include:
Long-Range Facility Plan – The District has capitalized on equipment life cycle and scheduled replacement once equipment has achieved its optimum life cycle.
Upgrade of the Building Automation System (BAS) controls to reduce repair costs. This has saved in labor costs on diagnostics, created reduced energy consumption, and established better managed equipment run times and optimization.
Centralization of irrigation control systems to reduce labor costs in system repair, diagnostics and water savings by way of better system management tools and remote operation with alarm and automatic reporting.
Conversion of lighting to LED technology has reduced the cost of labor and materials for changing light bulbs in florescent fixtures. It has also led to a reduction in electricity usage by 30%-40 % per fixture.
Utilizing an electronic Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) with integrated modules (SchoolDude) to manage the daily work order needs, preventive maintenance, utility costs, inventory control and facility use save the department in labor costs and helps optimize the facilities use to reduce utility costs.
Safety and Security
Why weren’t all safety items (i.e. fire alarms at Katy Elementary) listed as priority #1 on the list of project needs the Bond Committee reviewed?
The fire safety systems at Katy Elementary are currently functioning as expected. When renovations are done to any campus, the fire safety systems are upgraded as part of that work.
Why aren’t safety items immediately fixed at campuses? Why wait for a bond?
Repairs to, and sometimes replacement of, safety items is an ongoing process. Projects that are not funded from bond authorizations must come from the Maintenance and Operations fund which is also used to pay for salaries, school supplies, bus fuel, food services, utilities and ongoing facility and vehicle repairs.