Roof bids totaling over $660,000 are approved at NA

    A contract for roofing projects totaling more than $660,000 was approved Tuesday evening during the regular monthly meeting of the North Adams school board.
    Business manager Larry Carty said four bids were received for the project, which includes the replacement of sections of roof above the gymnasium and cafeteria/commons area at the middle school and a portion of the high school buildings. The low bid for each project was submitted by Fort Wayne Roofing: $463,800 for the middle school work and approximately $198,000 for the high school roof project.
    The board voted 5-0 to accept the low bids. Work is to be completed by early August.

Athletic fund okayed
    Also on Tuesday the board formally approved the formation of a not-for-profit athletic foundation that will allow the school district to raise private funds for athletic department endeavors. The Adams County Community Foundation will serve as the overseeing agency for the pass-through fund.
    Late last year Superintendent Dr. Wylie Sirk told board members that, in light of annual decreases in public funding for schools, local educators are "looking at how to generate revenue, through the establishment of alternative funding mechanisms, to keep North Adams competitive for future generations."
    The district's most immediate need, Sirk said, is to refurbish (Worthman) stadium and the surrounding area.
    Talk of establishing an athletic foundation first surfaced in conjunction with  plans to renovate or replace Worthman Stadium. Business manager Larry Carty last month reported that an architectural estimate of $529,500 has been received "just to restore the facility to what it originally was."
    A selection committee will be formed consisting of Sirk, Athletic Director Dale Manis, Bellmont High School Principal Scot Croner, and one member of the school board. Three community members will round out the committee, which will be charged with establishing specific guidelines for the acceptance and disbursement of funds.
    The new athletic fund will allow the solicitation of private, tax-deductible funds which will be earmarked expressly for athletic programs and facilities at North Adams schools. Board attorney Scott Ainsworth said the new fund "is a way for us to develop a 'bank' by allowing citizens to support athletic programs, should they choose to do so."
    Coni Mayer, executive director of the Adams County Community Foundation, said funds will be kept in a traditional banking account and will be subject to a 2 percent "pass-through fee."
    "This fund is a nice way for the school to find out if there is enough interest to make improvements," Mayer said. "I think a lot of alumni would like to see the sports facilities improved."
    The school board voted 5-0 to authorize the new fund.
    In a related discussion, Carty said discussions about the possible renovation or replacement of Worthman Stadium are ongoing.