School board focuses on Franklin Elementary roof, restoring power to sports complex

T-R PHOTO BY ADAM SODDERS - Roof replacement at Franklin Elementary, 1315 W. Main St., is already under way. The part of the roof in question rested over several fourth grade classrooms prior to the July 19 tornado. The Franklin roof replacement was among the items discussed at Monday’s school board meeting.

While much of the recent discussion around buildings in Marshalltown has focused on tornado damage, the Marshalltown School Board had another, unrelated priority for the Franklin Elementary School roof.

“The Franklin Elementary roof was a summer project,” said district Buildings and Grounds Director Chuck Springer. “This is the northwest quadrant of roofing.”

The estimated cost of the roofing replacement is $63,800 and the bid for the work was awarded to Central States Roofing. The project was part of a list of summer projects set forth earlier this year by the board and Springer.

“So, what’s in front of us here is planned, not storm related?” board member Ben Fletcher said to Springer. Springer confirmed that was the case.

He said the estimated cost fits well within the original estimated budget for the roof replacement, which was $70,000. While the roof repair on the northwest side of the building was not related to the July 19 tornado, Springer said there was “significant” damage done to another part of the Franklin roof in the storm.

He said insurance is covering that part of the roof repair.

An agreement between the district and Alliant Energy concerning restoring power to much of the Marshalltown High School sports complex ahead of the start of football season was also approved.

“We had a lot of lights that were out at the complex,” Springer said. He said an inspection found power had been lost to the press box, the scoreboard and more.

Springer said there are three main lines that feed power to the sports complex. They extend underground from a power pole on nearby Olive Street to a transformer behind the softball bleachers.

“We went and checked these lines and we found … that one of the feed legs was completely dead,” he said. “Alliant made the determination that they were going to shut down all three lines so that we didn’t have any issues.”

Of particular concern to the board was the fact that Alliant requested a liability waiver in the contract for the work of reconnecting the power lines. The item was initially on the meeting’s consent agenda, but the board decided to move it to the main agenda for further discussion.

Springer said such a waiver request is “very, very common” when a power company does work on property that is not theirs. The transformer is on school property, he said, so the company added the waiver language in the contract.

Springer also said Alliant will be responsible for reconnecting the lines on Olive Street, so the likelihood of damage being done by Alliant on school property is low.

The board also approved a set of goals for itself and superintendent Theron Schutte Monday. For the board, the list includes focusing on student achievement, adapting to state changes to collective bargaining and ensuring the “financial integrity of the district.”

Superintendent goals include improving student achievement and financial stability, as well as implementing the district’s strategic plan and the long-range facilities plan.

The next Marshalltown School Board meeting is set for 5 p.m. Sept. 4 at the Central Administration Office, 1002 S. 3rd Ave.

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Contact Adam Sodders at

(641) 753-6611 or asodders@timesrepublican.com