Vallejo school board begins work on possible 2018 bond measure – Times Herald

By John Glidden

The Vallejo school board will spend up to $50,000 to prepare the district for a possible run at a school bond in 2018.

A cadre of parents, educators, and community members attended the school board meeting Wednesday night recommending the trustees support the move, which includes working with bond counsel and district financial analysts, and advertising a Request for Qualifications (RFP) for qualified bond polling/information services, and communications/strategy consultants.

In the 4-1 vote, with Trustee Marianne Kearney-Brown opposed, the board further authorized district staff to “develop and initiate a plan of action with regular board updates and authorizations” regarding updating the facilities master plan and an implementation plan. Staff will also determine the type and amount of any possible bond as well.

 

Source: Vallejo school board begins work on possible 2018 bond measure

School board to consider reappointment of 2 Bond Oversight Committee members tonight – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

The Governing Board of the Benicia Unified School District will be voting to reappoint two members of the Measure S Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee (CBOC) at tonight’s meeting.Per the general obligation bonds of Measure S which was approved by Benicia voters in 2014 to provide funding for facility improvements at Benicia schools, the district is required to have a CBOC with seven members who meet quarterly to go over bond expenditure reports. The seven members consist of one person representing a local business, one person representing a senior citizens’ organization, one person representing a taxpayers’ organization, a parent or guardian of a Benicia Unified student, a parent or guardian of a Benicia Unified student who also serves on a parent-teacher organization or school site council, and two at-large community members.

The term for each member is two years, and the terms of two— at-large member Ron Arrants and taxpayers’ organization representative Pat Lopes— are slated to end on Oct. 1. Per CBOC bylaws, members can not serve more than three consecutive terms and the school board has the ability to appoint members based on the recommendation of the superintendent.Superintendent Dr. Charles Young is recommending that the board reappoint Arrants and Lopes for two-year terms that run through Oct. 1, 2019. Both members had previously been re-appointed in 2015.

Source: School board to consider reappointment of 2 Bond Oversight Committee members tonight

Vacaville USD leaders expected to OK $35 million in Markham upgrades – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Vacaville Unified leaders, when they meet tonight, are expected to approve $35 million in Measure A dollars to modernize Markham Elementary, will consider approving revised school start times for the 2018-19 year, and will hear a student suicide prevention update.

The Markham vote will come after a Sept. 12 special governing board meeting at the Markham Avenue campus, where trustees, based on their comments, appeared poised to approve the bond money to modernize and upgrade the school, built in 1962 and one of the district’s oldest.

The roll call vote will come after more than a year of discussion, including an August facilities planning workshop, of how to improve facilities at the aging campus and how much to spend doing it.

Over recent weeks and months, district administrators have urged trustees to make a decision, because time is running out to meet preferred deadlines — for design and landscaping plans, heeding city regulations, and approvals by the Office of the State Architect, for example — before a planned groundbreaking in summer 2019.

Source: Vacaville school district leaders expected to OK $35 million in Markham upgrades

Goldstone to be honored; Vallejo school board to receive info on possible bond – Times Herald

By John Glidden

Almost two decades after he was unceremoniously removed as superintendent, Steve Goldstone will be honored by the Vallejo school board Wednesday night.

The board of trustees is expected to approve a resolution thanking Goldstone for serving as interim superintendent of the Vallejo City Unified School District for the past five months.

Goldstone was hired in April after trustees fired former superintendent Ramona Bishop without cause in March.

“Dr. Goldstone will be truly missed by current school board members, teachers, staff, and the people of Vallejo for his personal contributions as someone who is positive, supportive, respectful, and having a deep sense of integrity in all that he does with students, staff, and the school board,” the resolution states. “His broad and lengthy educational experience and awareness, quite classiness, and quick wit will be missed by many.”

He previously served as VCUSD superintendent from 1995 until 2000, when he was fired by a majority of the then-board.

Source: Goldstone to be honored; Vallejo school board to receive info on possible bond

Budget on SCC agenda – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

A public hearing and the adoption of the 2017-18 budget, a change order and completion date for the new Biotechnology and Science Building project at the Vacaville Center, and an appointment to the Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee are on the agenda tonight when the Solano Community College District governing board meets in Vallejo.

The seven-member board is expected to approve the $153.3 million in expenses, well in excess of $110 million in revenues, according to agenda documents. The general fund, at $65.2 million, accounts for most of the budget, followed by capital outlay, at $49.4 million, debt service of $25.3 million, child development at $823,000, and trust expenditures of $11.6 million.

Trustees are expected to approve the budget.

The change order stipulates the completion date for the new $26.3 million Biotechnology and Science Building project at the Vacaville Center, on North Village Parkway, will be Oct. 18, instead of Sept. 17, to allow for completion of some final work.

Source: Budget on SCC agenda

Renovated Benicia High School stadium officially open – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

It is finally here. After more than three years of planning, discussing and numerous construction delays, Benicia High School’s stadium is open for play, following a grand opening ceremony Thursday.

In 2014, Benicia residents voted to approve Measure S, a ballot initiative aimed at providing $49.6 million in bond funding for improvements at Benicia Unified School District’s seven schools. One of the largest projects to be funded by the initiative was the renovation of Benicia High’s George Drolette Stadium, which was constructed around 1966. The renovation of the stadium, which consists of a football and soccer field as well as a track, was expected to be completed in Oct. 2016 but due to various delays— including one of the Bay Area’s rainiest winter seasons in years— the construction kept getting pushed back. Now the field is ready for play, and the school celebrated with a ribbon cutting Thursday.

The stadium boasts a number of new features including aluminum bleachers that can seat up to 3,300 people, an 8-lane all-weather track, upgraded lighting, a new concession stand relocated to the front of the stadium, a “memory brick” circle emblazoned with the names of past and present Benicia High Schoolers, and a new entryway with signage welcoming Panthers. The only element remaining from the previous stadium was the scoreboard.

Source: Renovated Benicia High School stadium officially open

A look at 2 Solano school bonds proves informative – Daily Republic

By John Takeuchi

Important things come and go. It’s wise to review them, to learn for the future.

Let’s take a look at two very expensive local school bonds: Fairfield-Suisun School District’s Measure C ($100 million) and Solano Community College District’s Measure G ($150 million), approved by voters in 2002.

Both measures used state Proposition 39 (passed in 2000), that allowed school construction bonds to be approved with 55 percent Yes votes. Among its rules, bond revenues could only be spent on constructing and rehabilitating school facilities. In addition, the ballot text was required to show the specific projects to be funded; that lets you estimate whether the amount of the bond is legitimate. Later legislation added an “independent citizens’ oversight committee” to assure the public that bond funds were being spent properly.

Source: A look at 2 Solano school bonds proves informative

Solano College to fete auto tech program milestone in Vallejo – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

The Solano Community College Automotive Technology Program has moved into a new 30,000-square-foot facility at the college’s Vallejo Center with the start of the current academic year and celebrates a grand opening this week.

The project is funded by voter-approved Measure Q. The project doubles the size of the automotive technology facility and allows student enrollment to grow.

Source: The Week Ahead: Solano College to fete auto tech program milestone in Vallejo

VUSD leaders poised to OK $35M in Markham upgrades – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

After a community outreach meeting Tuesday, Vacaville Unified leaders appear poised to approve $35 million in Measure A dollars to modernize and upgrade Markham Elementary, one of the oldest schools in the district.

Their decision, expected during the Sept. 21 trustees meeting, will come after more than a year of discussion, including an August facilities planning workshop, of how to improve facilities at the aging Markham Avenue campus and how much to spend doing it.

District administrators scheduled the meeting because time is running out to adhere to preferred deadlines — for design and landscaping plans, heeding city regulations, and approvals by the Office of the State Architect, for example — before planned groundbreaking in summer 2019.

Source: VUSD leaders poised to OK $35M in Markham upgrades

SCC leaders to condemn hate and violence, consider new library – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

A resolution condemning hate and violence, several Measure Q-related items, and the proposed 2017-18 budgets are on the agenda when Solano Community College leaders meet tonight in Vacaville.

Trustees are expected to approve a resolution that condemns the Aug. 12 violence in Charlottesville, Va., which resulted in injury and the death of anti-hate demonstrator Heather Heyer, but, at the same time, go on record that the school is a place where free speech is respected, encouraged and shared but opposes racist and “intolerable views that impede a safe environment where teaching and learning can occur for all,” according to the resolution’s wording.

The governing board also is expected to approve more than $42 million in Measure Q and state funding to begin building a Library/Learning Resource Center at the main Fairfield campus, at 4000 Suisun Valley Road. Measure Q was the $348 million bond approved by county voters in 2012.

Source: SCC leaders to condemn hate and violence, consider new library

Measure S director: Finishing touches being put on Benicia High stadium – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

The renovation of Benicia High School’s George Drolette Stadium has just a little more work to be done before it can be opened for use, according to an update provided by Measure S Bond Director Roxanne Egan on the voter-approved initiative at Thursday’s school board meeting.In 2014, Benicia residents voted to approve a ballot initiative that would provide $49.6 million in bond funding for improvements at each of the Benicia Unified School District’s seven schools. One of the largest projects to be funded was a remodel of Benicia High’s football and soccer stadium and track & field, including such changes as a new 8-lane all-weather track, upgraded lighting and new bleachers.

The previous stadium had been demolished in July 2016, and a groundbreaking ceremony for the new facilities was held one month later. Construction was expected to be completed in the spring, but several delays in construction— including one of the wettest winter seasons in a long time— pushed its potential opening back to the fall. A grand opening ceremony was slated for August, but Egan said more work remains to be done.Further work includes completing painting on the team room buildings— including blue striping and yellow trim, painting a Benicia Panthers logo on the backside of the press box, custom painting the restroom building and applying stucco to the concession building.However, Egan noted that a lot of work has been done in the last couple of months, including applying stucco to the restroom building, adding color to the press box and adding lettering to the track. Egan said the last item was a good symbolic representation for the current stage of the project.

Source: Measure S director: Finishing touches being put on Benicia High stadium

Impact of Measure A projects seen on first day of school – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

The herald of the day was not the first bell, but white-painted letters on the back windshield of several cars — “Seniors c/o 2018” and “Seniors 2K18” — headed at 7:40 a.m. to Vacaville High, one of several campuses in Vacaville Unified undergoing major physical changes under Measure A, as the first hours of the new academic year began on a sweetly blue and cloudless Thursday.

The nearly 2,000 students at the West Monte Vista Avenue campus were in their seats by 7:50 a.m., including several hundred in the brand-new $10 million, 15-classroom English building, literally a stone’s throw from a similar building, for mathematics classes, to be completed by the December holiday break. Both projects, including earlier expansions and relocation of the school’s main parking lot and tennis courts, are funded by the $194 million bond measure passed by Vacaville Unified voters in 2014.

Source: Impact of Measure A projects seen on first day of school

School board to kick off 2017-2018 year with Measure S update – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

Benicia Unified School District schools are nearly back in session for the 2017-2018 year, and so are the Governing Board meetings. As is usually the case, one of the items on the agenda is devoted to providing an update on the status of Measure S bond projects.

Measure S is an initiative approved by Benicia voters in 2014 to provide $49.6 million in bond funding for renovation and upgrades of school facilities. Bond projects completed to date include upgrading the technology infrastructure at all seven schools, playground enhancements at all four elementary schools, exterior painting at Benicia High School and repairing the roofs at Benicia Middle School and Mary Farmar Elementary School.Bond Director Roxanne Egan will deliver an update on items that were discussed at the July 25 BUSD Citizens’ Oversight Committee meeting, as well as updates on items being funded by Measure S.

Source: School board to kick off 2017-2018 year with Measure S update

Measure Q contracts, DoD grant are on SCC board agenda – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Several contract change orders related to Measure Q, a Department of Defense grant, an agreement with the Bay Area Clean Water Agencies for classroom instruction are on the agenda when Solano Community College leaders meet tonight in Fairfield.

Trustees will review and likely approve some half-dozen small Measure Q contracts before considering a significantly larger one with Pacific Gas & Electric for electric service facilities for intersection improvements at the Vacaville Center on North Village Parkway. The contract is nearly $68,000 to relocate a junction vault out of a classroom building driveway. It does not include related trenching work, according to agenda documents. (Measure Q was the $348 million bond passed by Solano County voters in 2012 to improve and modernize college facilities.)

Source: Measure Q contracts, DoD grant are on SCC board agenda

Trustees review Measure J oversight panel report – Daily Republic

By Ryan McCarthy

Former Fairfield-Suisun School District trustee Perry Polk is among four people recommended for the Measure J Citizens’ Oversight Committee in a report school district trustees reviewed Thursday.

The school board established the committee in 2016 and appointed members, but one panel member resigned and another was recommended for removal after three unexcused absences, a school district staff report said.

Polk is recommended as a member at-large, while Sylvia Robertson would represent parents. Jennifer Stephenson would be a member at-large and Claudia Wilde would represent local businesses.

Source: Trustees review Measure J oversight panel report

Trustees table to Aug. 3 Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee resolution – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Dixon Unified leaders on Thursday tabled until their next meeting, Aug. 3, a resolution to establish the Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee, the decision coming after nearly three hours of discussion, by turns rancorous, repetitious and frustrating.

The lengthy discussion on the first new business agenda item came as a surprise to some, given the seemingly routine nature of such matters in other school districts, but committee members, who have already been meeting over the past several weeks, objected to the addition of five pages of bylaws, committee procedures and an excerpt from the California Constitution attached to the three-page resolution.

Source: Trustees table to Aug. 3 Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee resolution

Fairfield-Suisun School District seeks bond panel members – Daily Republic

By Ryan McCarthy

Residents are sought to serve on the Measure J bond oversight committee that reviews Fairfield-Suisun School District spending of bond funds and issues an annual report on their findings.

The school district seeks a member representing a senior citizen’s group and a member-at-large from the general community.

Meetings are held every other month on the second Monday at 5:30 p.m.

Source: Fairfied-Suisun School District seeks bond panel members

Vacaville school trustees face light agenda Thursday – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

With new LCAPs and annual budgets sent to county offices of education, California school districts tend to face light midsummer agendas in July and August and that will be the case Thursday, when Vacaville Unified leaders meet.

In what likely will be a short meeting, concerned mostly with financial matters, trustees are expected to approve a revised 2017-18 salary schedule for classified, or school-suppport, managers, an unrepresented employee group that ranges from custodial manager and public information officer to director of maintenance and technology coordinator, with monthly pay, depending on which of five steps they fall under, that ranges from (all Step 1, or beginning, salaries, for example) $5,340 and $7,524 to $8,925 and $9,167.

There was no indication in agenda documents about why the salary scheduled was revised.

Source: Vacaville school trustees face light agenda Thursday

Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee to meet – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Dixon Unified’s Measure Q Citizens Bond Oversight Committee will meet in Wednesday in Dixon.

Members will hear an overview of existing bond projects from John Calise, the rural school district’s director of facilities and operations.

They also will hear from a guest speaker Anton Jungherr on organizational guidance.

Gary Riddle, a committee member, will offer a report and the committee may take action, according to agenda documents.

Calise will present information about the committee’s website content.

Source: Measure Q Citizens Oversight Committee to meet

Measure A projects continue apace, on time and budget – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

School is out, and it is high season for Measure A-related construction projects across several Vacaville Unified campuses, where, at two sites on Thursday, small hand-operated, gas-powered compactors rapidly thudded and packed soil, portable electric saws buzzed and cut wood, and shovels crunched gravel.

Measure A was the $194 million bond Vacaville voters passed in 2014, to upgrade and modernize the school district’s many aging campuses, more than half of them 50 years old, and, of those, several more than 60 years old.

On a tour of new construction at Vacaville High and remodeling at Willis Jepson Middle School, Dan Banowetz, the district’s director of facilities, said the Division of State Architect is still reviewing some plans for other Measure A projects but work continues apace, on time and on budget, for existing projects.

 

Source: Measure A projects continue apace, on time and budget