New Rochelle Board of Education meeting, introduction to the upcoming Budget. March 6th, 2014
I want to thank David Lacher for allowing me to speak for 5 min, instead of only 3.
Looking at the all the questionable contract expenses that came to light in the last few days, will that make any difference on how you are voting on these blanket contracts?
As I identified on Tuesday March 4th, these contracts really do not show us what work we receive for the amount of money we are spending, and in these financially challenged times, shouldn’t we watch extra carefully if money is spent wisely for projects that are truly needed and are reasonably priced.
I personally have a serious problem with the price tag of $70.00 per hr for a LABORER.
Our Master Degree Teachers are not making this kind of money. That means we are effectively spending $ 560.00 per day for someone that might hold the shovel, or mix the cement, or hold the flag.
Those $560 would buy our children 11 hrs of special program.
And as I have shown you last time, it seems like some of these contractors have the magical ability to squeeze 60 hrs of labor for two guys into a single work day. So, what does that mean for our $70 per hr Laborer?
I just looked at some more of the current contracts and we are having one for "Sidewalks, Driveways and Miscellaneous Repairs" for $75,000. This year this contract is awarded Wager Contracting.
Interestingly enough, Wager is ALSO holding the contract for "Mason Mechanics" for $200,000.
The contracts are overlapping, so we have “coverage" of $275,000 for mason related activities.
Plus we are having a blanket contract for "Masonry supplies" with Sammarco Stones for $20,000.
Please outline some of the projects that were done under these contracts so we can go back and get a feel for what kind of work was performed for what kind of money.
And why these jobs could not have been performed by our in-house mason.
And also what is budgeted to be done this coming year?
Are all these contracts only for a “need” basis or are there actually any plans for capital improvement projects covered by these contracts.
And then it was interesting to note, that we have again contracts for "Equipment Rental with Operator" for $75,000, awarded to Zonzini, same company family with the snow removal contract. So, how does it work, do mason contractors have to rent the scaffolding from Zonzini, who then again turns around to rent it from a scaffolding company?
Who is the project supervisor that makes sure that all work is done to US Architectural standards?
And lastly, I am sure you were waiting for this one already…who checks on the garbage that is dumped?As these companies have substantial garbage fees worked into their contracts, I am curious if the district is actually supplied with a dumping slip to prove how much it actually was? I know the dumping fees are invoiced per yard by the contractor, where as dumping at transfer stations goes by ton. Many materials such as dirt and asphalt can actually be disposed of for free at different locations nearby. Why are we allowing a dumping fee for these materials, if we can recycle them for free?
All in all, the more I learn about this budgeting and contracting system, the more I am interested to see actual numbers and actual work to reference if we are getting truly a good deal.
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