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PSS identifies 9 ‘urgent need’ projects for next year

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The Public School System has identified some “urgent” facility projects for their schools and campuses for next fiscal year.

According to a budget presentation and breakdown of their proposed $42 million budget to Gov. Eloy S. Inos, PSS lists about nine “urgent needs” projects.

The governor ended up proposing a PSS budget of $36.45 million, which now sits with the House Ways and Means Committee.

The “urgent needs” breakdown describes the replacement of Saipan Southern High School gutters, saying that existing gutters at the school need to be replaced.

A majority of gutters are corroded and will eventually have detrimental effects on classroom buildings, the chart says, adding that replacing the gutters now will prevent additional expenses in the future.

The budget for the gutter project was proposed at $150,000.

The second “urgent needs” project is the demolition of San Antonio Elementary School Building C, which has been condemned. According to PSS, funding is needed to demolish this building, which could pose a risk to staff and students entering the building. The building could also eventually harbor vermin or termites, for example. The budget for this was at $20,000.

PSS lists a third “urgent needs” project, which covers water and wastewater projects not funded by the local delegation.

PSS has already been granted $94,446.98 through Saipan Local Law 17-18. But PSS says additional funding is needed to address remaining projects. These include plumbing and re-piping work.

The remaining projects are estimated to cost $120,000.

PSS would also like funding for ongoing facility upgrades for code compliance and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. With funding of $150,000, they would modernize the fire exit at Garapan Elementary School and Kagman High School, for example.

This money would also go for ongoing renovations and accommodations for ADA compliance. More projects could include electrical upgrades.

Other “urgent need” projects range from $70,000 to $160,000 and include maintenance of air-conditioning units and fire alarms, campus beautification and upkeep, training and equipment for maintenance staff, budget for incidentals, and funding for aluminum doors and windows.

Dennis B. Chan | Reporter
Dennis Chan covers education, environment, utilities, and air and seaport issues in the CNMI. He graduated with a degree in English Literature from the University of Guam. Contact him at dennis_chan@saipantribune.com.

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