The Genoa school board has scheduled a special meeting for Jan. 19 to review contract bids for the construction of a new elementary school building.
Bid packages were opened Dec. 23.
According to Bill Nye, district treasurer, in total the bids are about $1.4 million less than the board and administration were expecting.
With the lower bids, the board will have the option to consider alternatives for several different components of the building construction, he said.
For example, the board could look at having a metal roof installed instead of a shingle roof, Nye said, adding a metal roof typically would have a longer warranty.
“With the lower bids we can go from a very good building to an even better building that is more cost efficient,” he said.
Another option the board may consider would be better flooring.
The original bid estimates by the board were:
• General trades contract - $6.8 million
• Food service contract - $307,620
• Fire protection contract - $214,460
• Plumbing contract - $580,580
• HVAC contract - $1.4 million
• Electrical contract - $2.03 million
The low bids are a sign of a dismal economy for the construction trades, Nye said.
“The contractors really want and need the business and I’m glad we can reap the benefit,” he said.
Genoa voters approved a bond issue that will leverage funding through the Ohio School Facilities Commission for the project.
The board and administration had estimated the project would cost about $11.4 million.
While the district is benefiting from a downturn in the economy as it prepares for the construction of a new school, it is also taking a hit in its invested funds and local property taxes – another sign of a slow economy.
Nye said the current low interest rates have hurt investment returns and home foreclosures are dropping tax revenues.
“We’re getting more bang for our buck for our bids. Unfortunately, this a bad time for our investment returns and property tax revenues,” he said.