Live Blog: May 8 Marshfield School Board Meeting

9:50 p.m.: Bohon makes the motion to adjourn and reconvene in closed session.

9:45 p.m.: Moving onto discussion of a possible joint meeting with the City Council, which the board did last year around the end of May. Talk of a date in late fall, with possible action taken at that meeting, Geegan said.

9:44 p.m.: The board unanimously approves the CESA 5 2013-14 service contract.

9:41 p.m.: There is a motion on the floor to approve the 2013-14 summary of benefits for support staff, which are coming off of its contract and being applied to the provisions under Act 10 for the first time.

It’s passes unanimously.

9:38 p.m.: We’re moving onto the Negotiations Committee, which is short. They’ve been working on the staff handbook, and will have a draft ready soon.

9:35 p.m.: The board rejects the policy reform 4-3, with Leifheit, Bohon and Critelli voting yes.

Konrardy motions to reconsider with an amendment that would add a duty to the treasurers position which would require that individual to serve on the Finance Committee.

The policy passes 4-3, with Leifheit, Bohon and Critelli voting no.

9:33 p.m.: Bohon moves to amend the committee motion to remove duties from the treasurer and clerk that they serve as president in the absence of the president and vice-president. It does not get seconded.

9:22 p.m.: As expected, Kruger comes out against the policy, saying he would wish the treasurer serves as the chair of the Finance Committee, which was included in a previous draft, but taken out after discussion about historical considerations.

Critelli said that it’s totally acceptable for the treasurer to chair the committee, but that he thinks it shouldn’t be codified in policy as it ties the hands of the board if certain situations were to arise.

9:14 p.m.: Critelli makes the motion to approve the changes to the board officer duties, which was approved for a first reading last month. Expect Randell Kruger to vote no on this one.

9:13 p.m.: The Board unanimously approves the changes to the committee structure, which will take effect immediately. Normally changes to policy take two readings to take effect.

9:06 p.m.: Critelli is going over the changes to the committee structure of the board, which would take place before the appointment of members this month. Personnel and Negotiations would merge and be called Employee Relations. Safety and Security would be added to the Transportation Committee. Policy and Legislation would review the district policies related to the changes, and make recommendations to the full board as necessary. This would leave the board with six committees; normally there are seven, with each board member serving as a chair of a committee, and serving on a total of three. This change would preclude the board president from chairing a committee with some members only holding two posts.

9:02 p.m.: Geegan is done with her report. Moving onto commitee reports, sans B&G and Finance, which already went. Policy is the only one left to report. They are discussing the potential increase of athletic fees. Currently the district is well below average for fees in the Valley Conference. The discussion would potentially place the district around average, or just below.

8:55 p.m.: The board has given Sturomski and the B&G committee approval to move forward with putting together a bid package for the second option, which would provide for a secured entrance near where Principal Steve Sukawaty’s office is currently located in the high school. Now we’re back to the normal agenda, with Superintendent Peg Geegan giving her report. She’s currently commending the 279 teachers as Teacher’s Appreciation Week is this week.

8:50 p.m.: Mancl is in agreement with the plan, but is wondering how much the other doors are monitored to see if they’re opened. Sturomski and Mike Drevlow, the district’s technology director, said each door has a contact on it, which alerts a number of people if they are opened.

8:40 p.m.: Sturomski is laying out three different plans for providing a secure entrance at the high school. He said his second choice, which would create a vestibule in the main office and relocate the police liaison officer’s office is built into his department’s budget for next year, but if the board decides to do another option, they can reallocate those funds.

8:31 p.m.: The motion is approved unanimously. Now onto talk about improving the security at the entrance to the high school. Sturomski said the district has made some huge strides since undergoing a security audit a couple years ago, but the high school entrance needs some work to provide full security.

8:30 p.m.: There is a motion on the floor to approve the swap of the office and the CRC, which is about $400,000. Board members are wondering what would come out of the project if this were to be included. Krueger and Konrardy are saying that the project as it stands right now doesn’t require anything to be removed.

8:18 p.m.: Frances Bohon is concerned about the increased traffic congestion at 6th Street and Palmetto Avenue. Sturomski said the city was aware of the plans, and approved of it. He said he’s not sure the front of the building is used as a main drop-off point for students in the morning.

8:13 p.m.: Work is set to begin June 6, the day after school is let out for the summer. About two-thirds of the outside of the building will have some work done on it over the summer. Contractors should start prepping for the summer in the next couple of weeks.

8:06 p.m.: All of the brick will be cleaned and fixed around the building, with the exception of the south side of the building facing the stadium, this summer. All the windows will also be replaced as well, with the exception of the south side as well. The office and the core resource center will be swapped around, which will provide a more secure entrance to the facility, will also occur.

8:04 p.m.: Building and grounds director Ron Sturomski is giving a rundown of summer projects being conducted throughout the district, and specifically the middle school.

8:01 p.m.: Pat Saucerman gave the board an overview of how the district’s budget is shaping up for the 2013-14 school year. Currently, he’s projecting about a $1.2 million deficit, which will be made up with a reduction in utility costs, departamental budgets, as well as reductions in some teaching and support staff positions.

If Sen. Mike Ellis gets his wish of a $200 per pupil increase in revenue caps, it would reduce the deficit by about $400,000 Saucerman had said earlier in the evening.

7:58 p.m.: The board unanimously approves re-allocating about $186,000 from utilities and professional development payements that were unused this school year to theatre curtains at the high school, a new table saw at the middle school, paying off a state loan early, and providing an additional $100,000 to the middle school renovation project this summer.

7:57 p.m.: The board unanimously approved the sale of those bonds, which brings the total savings to about $1.7 million in the past six months for property taxpayers.

7:52 p.m.: We’re having a little deviation from the published agenda as the finance committee report is being moved up to allow for a presentation from David DeYoung of Stifel Nicolaus. The district will save more than $900,000 in refinancing outstanding bonds issued in 2006. The district is going to be paying a 1.7 percent fixed interest rate through April 2026 on about $8.8 million in bonds.

7:50 p.m.: In a vote between the two Mark’s on the board, Mark Critelli will continue his duties as the board clerk, beating Mark Konrardy 5-2

7:47 p.m.: In a run-off between the two new members of the board, Pete Mancl will hold the office of treasurer, after beating Amber Leifheit by a vote of 5-2. Up next, board clerk.

7:42 p.m.: Randell Kruger has been voted vice president, after beating France Bohon by a vote of 4-3.

7:40 p.m.: Mark Critelli and Marlene Stueland were the two board members nominated for president. Stueland has been named president of the school board for the next year, winning the vote 5-2. Vice president is up next.

7:39 p.m.: Marlene Stueland, Mark Critelli, and Frances Bohon were nominated for president. Because Critelli and Bohon both received one vote, there will be a second vote to determine who the second nominee will be.

7:37 p.m.: Pat Saucerman is going over the process of electing new board members. Will start with president, vice-president, treasurer, and clerk. First round of ballots is for nominating a member for the office, with the second round being a run-off election.

7:36 p.m.: Amber Leifheit and Pete Mancl are taking the official oath of office after being elected to the board on April 2.

7:32 p.m.: Members of the school board are filing into the meeting room following an almost hour long executive session discussing their response to the Marshfield Teachers Association’s request to negotiate.

The Marshfield School Board is set to meet tonight at 7:30 p.m. with a new slate of board officers up for election right off the bat. Tonight’s meeting is the first one in nine years that won’t have either Tim Deets or Graham Olson, after they both decided to step down after serving for nine years each. Board officers from the previous term that are returning are Vice President Marlene Stueland, Treasurer Randell Kruger, Clerk Mark Critelli. So with Deets’ non-return to the board, it opens up the president’s position, which will be interesting to see if Stueland, who has served previously as president, assumes the post.

After board officers are elected, they are expected to take action on the re-organization of the board’s committees, as well as the reform governing officers’ duties. The board is also set to approve the refinancing of $8.8 million in bonds, with an expected savings north of $900,000, as well as the reallocation of certain budgeted funds that are so far unexpended.

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