The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

July 18, 2013

Lewisburg schools, soccer club to split $363G field cost

By Evamarie Socha
The Daily Item

— LEWISBURG — The Lewisburg Area School District will enter into a private-public partnership with a local soccer club for two athletic fields on the site of the proposed high school in Kelly Township, allowing it to split the $363,000 cost for the fields.

The deal will give the North Union Soccer Club priority to use the two grass fields when the school district is not using them, school board President Kathy Swope said during Thursday night’s meeting.

The fields will be 225 feet by 360 feet and 180 feet by 360 feet. Superintendent Mark DiRocco recommended the configuration to the board.

“This allows greater opportunities for the community to use the facilities and to partner for such relationships,” Swope said.

The soccer club had been looking to make an arrangement with a local school district and was recommended to talk to Lewisburg about the deal.

The school district’s flexible time line for the high school project designated construction of two athletic fields on the new site during the 2013-14 school year. There was no discussion as to when field development would begin, but they need to be done before the high school construction to allow for infrastructure work, such as plumbing or sewer, that will be done beneath the fields.

Although it was a quiet, short meeting, the school board got some heavy lifting out of the way:

n Final costs for the security upgrade at Lewisburg schools came in at $140,516, DiRocco said. The board voted previously to award a $165,000 contract to Zartman Construction for school security, pending reductions that DiRocco would choose to make.

Among those, only eight of 17 doors at the high school will be replaced. Existing library doors at the Linntown Intermediate School will not be replaced, and existing door frames at all schools will remain.

n The school district received an additional $86,000 from the state for basic education funding. Business Manager Ron Kabonick said the money equals less than one-tenth of a mill for the school district. Funding for the accountability block grant and special education came in as projected, at nearly $46,000 and $1.01 million, respectively.

n The board approved a $27,000 contract with the Buffalo Valley Regional police for a security presence at Lewisburg schools through the new school year. The school district had a pilot program from February through May with the regional police and state police for stepped-up patrols. The state police contract was not available yet for action.

n The board tabled a motion to accept the Kelly Township Property Owners Agreement, which called on the school district to reimburse at the current rate the township’s engineer, land planner and solicitor for work they do reviewing the district’s high school plans. The board moved to delay a motion until officials find out what the current rate is.

Board members Mary Howe, Myrna Perkins and Dr. Tera Unzicker-Fassero were absent.