The regular meeting was called to order at 6 p.m. the Herkimer Jr./Sr. High School Cafeteria by President Brian Crandall and the Pledge of Allegiance was said.
President Crandall welcomed members in the audience, staff members and several fall athletes and their families to this evening’s meeting.
President Crandall explained to all that the Board of Education sets aside time at each Board meeting to give those in the audience an opportunity to address the Board directly on any subject they wished to discuss.
President Crandall explained the BOE welcomes public comment and community input at meetings. However, we caution that we are not authorized to engage in conversations pertaining to individual students, faculty, staff, or administrators. Topics of this nature may only be discussed during executive session and must be coordinated with the Superintendent of Schools prior to a BOE meeting.
No Public Comments were heard.
Approval of the Agenda
Mr. Conley moved and Ms. Fischer seconded a motion to formally approve the meeting agenda as submitted. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.
Superintendent Miller indicated that the Board received several informational items that were not included in their Board packet for information only and noted they will be referred to later in the meeting.
Mr. Conley moved and Ms. Fischer seconded a motion to place all appropriate Board Communications on file with the District Clerk. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0.
Superintendent Miller and several of the BOE members provided the following Board Recognitions:
Ms. Paragi recognized the following fall athletes with a certificate and pin for receiving a 90 or above average in the first marking period:
Girls Soccer: Marietta Alteri, Lyndsey Bass, Abigail Boyles, Alana Ferri, Kurstin Gay, Cassandra Gilbert, Johanna Humble, Maria Humble, Emily Jackson, Eliza Marusic, Peyton McKinney, Gianna Rizza, Abigail Stapf, Emily Temple, Kayleigh Voce.
Girls Tennis: Charlotte Boncella, Ariana Huhko, Sara Warner, Ella Wilcox, Tracy Xiao
Cross Country: Kyle Bixler, Matthew Gallagher, Patrick Gurtowski, Matthew Kelly, Spencer Stallman, Kristine Nietes, Emily Salamon
Field Hockey: Karlie Helmer, Ally Kirkpatrick, Marion Leskovar, Kaitlynn Ovitt, Salena Reinhardt, Samantha Vandenberg, Angelica Zhushma
Boys Soccer: Michial Nichols, Dante Mergenthaler, Evan Maiorano, Nathaniel Polus, Joaquin Nietes, Benjamin Flint, Zachary Williams
Football: Santino Aceto, Wyatt Renshaw, Adam Green, Jesse Richard, Corey LaQuee, Patrick Luppino, Patrick Parese, Michael Caliguire, Tyler Steele
Cheerleading: Natalie Crane, Natalie Wheet
Student Artists were recognized: Morrigan Spence, Logan Yager (Grade 1), Mark Curran, Stella Blue Ruffle (Grade 3), Avrey Allen, Ravonn Burkes, Russell Stapf (Grade 5), Caitlyn Dennis, Lilliana Langdon, Emily Harringshaw (Grade 8), Grace Kelly, Cheyanne, Kassidy Brown, Anthony Bambara, Victor Colon, Cody Rivers (Grade 9).
Approval of the Minutes
Mr. Conley moved and Mr. Petucci seconded a motion to approve the regularly scheduled meeting minutes of Wednesday, November 14, 2018, as presented. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.
Town of Herkimer Sewer Report
Mr. Dominic Frank, Supervisor of the Town of Herkimer, gave a brief overview to a possible agreement with the Town to expand sewer access in East Herkimer which will open up the area for greater economic development and provide more environmentally sound handling of sewage.
Upon recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Ms. Fischer seconded by Mr. Petucci the BOE accepted receipt of the following reports for the month of November 2018: General Warrant, which represents 117 checks with payments totaling $1,418,701.40, a Capital Warrant, which represents one check with a payment totaling $4,600.00; a Federal Warrant, which represents three (3) checks with payments totaling $26,728.50; the Trust and Agency Warrant, which covers items dealing with payroll [insurance, withholdings, etc.], totaled $689,779.87 and the HHS/HES Extra-Curricular Treasurer reports for October and November 2018, along with one budget transfer under the $5,000 limit totaling $4,500.00. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
The BOE acknowledged receipt of Ms. Hein’s Claims Auditor Report, for the months of October and November. There were seven (7) exceptions noted which have been corrected and the payments had been made.
The BOE also acknowledged receipt of the October and November 2018 Treasurer Reports.
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Ms. Fischer, seconded by Mr. Conley, the BOE accepted the agreement between the Herkimer CSD and the Herkimer– Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES effective November 27, 2018 through June 30, 2022 for the cost of $1 for the term of the bailment. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
Little Falls CSD- Contract for Special Education Services
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Ms. Fischer, seconded by Ms. Giffune the BOE accepted a contract for Special Education Services provided by the Little Falls CSD during the 2018-2019 school year for a student in the 15:1 Career Exploration program. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
Town of Herkimer Supplier Agreement
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Mr. Petucci seconded by Ms. Giffune, the BOE accepted the Supplier Agreement between the Town of Herkimer and the Herkimer CSD effective November 14, 2018. The Supplier agrees to sell, and the customer agrees to buy road salt in accordance with the terms and conditions of the agreement. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
Creation of a Scholarship Award
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Ms. Fischer, seconded by Ms. Gilbert, the BOE authorized the creation of a scholarship award to Mr. Terry Owen, a retired Elementary School teacher who had passed away in September 2018. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18]
Annual Fire Inspection Reports
Upon the recommendation of the Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Mr. Petucci, seconded by Ms. Fischer the BOE approved the following resolution:
NOTICE IS HERBY GIVEN, that the annual inspection for the 2018-2019 school year of the Bus Maintenance Facility, Herkimer Jr./Sr. High School, Herkimer Elementary School, Press Box and Concession Storage buildings of the Herkimer Central School District for fire hazards which might endanger the lives of students, teachers, and employees therein, has been completed and the report thereof is available at the office of Herkimer Central School District at 801 W. German Street, Herkimer, NY 13350 for inspection by all interested persons.
All in favor; motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
Business Office Update/ Superintendent’s Reports
Superintendent Miller provided the following updates:
- The District has been selected for a NYS Comptroller’s Audit. The data they are collecting suggests they will be looking at out purchasing procedures. We will update the Board when we are told definitively the area they are auditing. The auditors will contact BOE members directly and this is a normal process.
- The District is reviewing the possibility of developing solar arrays on our campuses. Superintendent Miller will have a proposal for the building team to consider in January. If the District chooses to move in this direction, the BOE would need to approve a proposition for public consideration for a 20-year power purchase agreement in May. There would be no cost to the taxpayers if agreed to purchase power produced by the arrays for an amount less than the District currently pays. More details will follow in January and February.
- The budget update for January shows projected total expenditures of $24,119,000 and projected total revenues of $24,637,000. This leaves a surplus of approximately $518,000 or 2% of the projected $25,190,000. An estimate of $450,000 of this surplus will be needed return our fund balance to 4%.
- The projected budget for 2019-20 is $24,190,000, which is down about 4% largely due to the anticipated debt service drop-off. This preview contains no cuts to services, anticipates a 2% increase in foundation aid and a 2% increase in the tax levy with the use of $650,000 in fund balance which will be fund balance recovered from the 2018-19 budget. There will be a more accurate projection in February after the State Aid runs become available. This will give the District a better understanding of the figures for health insurance, TRS, ERS and retirements.
- The middle school and high school concerts were amazing. Superintendent Miller thanked Mr. Krause and Mr. Gordon for their efforts in making the events successful. The Night Before Christmas performance (Grade 1) and the elementary Flash Mob were both outstanding. Thanks to all the staff that helped make our Holiday Season joyous.
- Policy Committee: A meeting has been scheduled for January 16, 2019 to review the 5000s and the Proposed Ag policies.
- Building Committee: Had met to discuss details of 2014 Phase III, 2018-19 Capital Outlay and the next steps for the 2018 project.
- Safety Committee: Building Level Safety Plans.
Ms. Vogt, Ms. Tomaso, and Mr. Abbe’s reports were reviewed with the BOE. Discussion followed. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
Superintendent Miller formally presented several staffing recommendations for Board consideration.
Mr. Conley moved and Ms. Fischer seconded a motion to approve the following personnel actions:
- Name: Johnson, Sarah
- Position: LTA/ Elementary School
- Effective: January 2, 2019
- Salary: $24,000.00 [pro-rated]
- 4-Year Probationary Period: 01/02/2019 – 01/02/2023 [pending certification]
- Name: Lawson, Alissa [Lesniak, Katherine]
- Position: AIS/ Elementary
- Effective: January 2, 2019; anticipated leave approximately 6-8 weeks; pending a physician’s release.
- Salary: $197.50/day (Reference Item III of the Annual Payment Guidelines for Substitutes)
- Name: Mancuso-LaSalle, Carolyn
- Position: School Counselor
- Location: District-wide
- Effective: January 8, 2019
2018-2019 Mentor Appointment
- Mentor: Leah Peyton | Mentee: Lily Corathers (Music Instrument Teacher)
- $ amount for mentor: $1,200
2018-19 Winter Interscholastic Coaching Appointment
- Name: Alexander, Jason
- Position: Modified Boys Basketball Coach
- $ amount: $1,900
2019 Spring Interscholastic Coaching Appointment
- Name: Steele, Zachary
- Position: Varsity Baseball Coach
- $ Amount: $3,350
2018-19 Winter Interscholastic Unpaid Coaching Appointment
- Carney, Michael- Unpaid Life-guarding, CPR/AED and First Aid Volunteer Instructor
- Effective July 1, 2018-June 20, 2019.
Discussion followed. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.
CSE/CPSE Program/Placement Recommendations
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Ms. Gilbert, seconded by Mr. Mihevc the BOE approved the Committee on Special Education, the Sub-Committee on Special Education and the Committee on Preschool Special Education program/placement recommendations as presented. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0. [Material filed in the supplemental file dated 12/19/18].
201 8 Capital Improvement Project Vote Results
Upon the recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Mr. Conley, seconded by Ms. Giffune the BOE formally accepted the results of the public vote on the 2018 Capital Improvement Project. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.
Bond Resolution for Capital Improvement Project 2018
Mr. Conley moved Ms. Fischer seconded a motion to approve the following resolution:
A BOND RESOLUTION, DATED DECEMBER 19, 2018, OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OF THE HERKIMER CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT, HERKIMER COUNTY, NEW YORK (THE “SCHOOL DISTRICT”) (A) AUTHORIZING THE SCHOOL DISTRICT (1) TO UNDERTAKE A CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECT AT AN ESTIMATED AGGREGATE MAXIMUM COST OF $16,700,000, (2) TO EXPEND OR APPLY TOWARD THE COST OF SAID PURPOSE AN AMOUNT NOT TO EXCEED $1,350,000 FROM THE SCHOOL DISTRICT’S CAPITAL RESERVE FUND, AND (3) TO ISSUE SERIAL BONDS OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT IN AN AGGREGATE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT NOT TO EXCEED $15,350,000 PURSUANT TO THE LOCAL FINANCE LAW TO FINANCE THE BALANCE OF THE COST OF SAID PURPOSE, AND (B) DELEGATING THE POWER TO ISSUE BOND ANTICIPATION NOTES IN ANTICIPATION OF THE SALE OF SUCH BONDS TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION.
BE IT RESOLVED, by the Board of Education (the “Board”) of the School District (by the favorable vote of not less than two-thirds of all members of the Board) as follows:
SECTION 1. The specific purpose (hereinafter referred to as “purpose”) to be financed pursuant to this resolution is to undertake a proposed Capital Improvement Project, 2018 (the “Project”) consisting of the partial reconstruction and renovation of, and the construction of additions, improvements, and upgrades to, various School District buildings and facilities (and the sites thereof), to implement various health, safety, accessibility and code compliance measures required by the State Education Department in connection with any significant capital improvement project, and various other measures that are generally described in (but are not to be limited by) the written plan for the Project that was prepared by the School District with the assistance of King + King Architects (the “Project Plan”), which is available for public inspection in the offices of the School District Clerk, such work being anticipated to include, without limitation and to the extent as and where required, the particular items described below: (1) building improvements anticipated to include (a) Family and Consumer Science classroom renovations, kitchen/serving upgrades, science room teacher stations, gymnasium improvements including bleachers reconfiguration, fitness center reconfiguration, and maintenance office expansion at the Jr./Sr. High School and (b) expansion of the restrooms at the Elementary School entrance; (2) safety and security upgrades including a vestibule extension at the Jr./Sr. High School and secure cross-corridor doors; (3) building system upgrades anticipated to include (a) mechanical upgrades, including HVAC equipment, controls, and boilers; (b) various electrical and lighting upgrades, including auditorium and house and stage lighting; and (c) plumbing upgrades; (4) other upgrades anticipated to include (a) ceilings in the Elementary School and Bus Garage, (b) various upgrades at the Bus Garage such as flooring and carbon monoxide detection equipment; (c) finishes, and (d) soundproofing offices and selected classrooms; (5) proposed site work anticipated to include (a) replacement or reconstruction of the bridge(s) across the Bellinger Brook Floodway, (b) athletic field upgrades at both schools, (c) sanitary system upgrades, (d) an access drive connecting bus loops at the Elementary School, and (e) other pavement work including parking and driveway areas, sidewalks, and drainage upgrades, all of the foregoing to include the purchase of original furnishings, equipment, machinery and apparatus required in connection with the purposes for which such buildings, facilities and sites are used, and all ancillary or related work required in connection therewith, and the Board is authorized to expend therefor, including for preliminary costs and costs incidental thereto. The maximum cost of said purpose will not exceed $16,700,000.
SECTION 2. The Board plans to finance the School District’s maximum estimated cost of said purpose (a) by the expenditure or application toward such purpose an amount not to exceed $1,350,000 from the School District’s Capital Reserve Fund and (b) by the issuance of a serial bond or bonds in an amount not to exceed $15,350,000 of the School District. The serial bond or bonds are hereby authorized to be issued therefor pursuant to the Local Finance Law, and to provide for the payment of the principal of and interest on such bonds by the levying of a tax on the real property of the School District, to be paid in annual installments as approved by the qualified voters of the School District voting at the Special School District Meeting and Vote held on December 4, 2018.
SECTION 3. It is hereby determined that said purpose is an object or purpose described in subdivision 97 of paragraph (a) of Section 11.00 of the Local Finance Law, and that the period of probable usefulness of said purpose is thirty (30) years.
SECTION 4. The faith and credit of said School District are hereby irrevocably pledged for the payment of the principal of and interest on such bond as the same respectively become due and payable. An annual appropriation shall be made in each year sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on such bond becoming due and payable in such year. There shall annually be levied on all the taxable real property of said School District, a tax sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on such bond as the same become due and payable.
SECTION 5. Subject to the provisions of this resolution and of the Local Finance Law, pursuant to the provisions of Section 30.00 relative to the authorization of the issuance of bond anticipation notes or the renewals of said notes and of Section 21.00, Section 23.00, Section 50.00, Sections 56.00 to 60.00, Section 62.00, Section 63.00 and Section 164.00 of the Local Finance Law, the powers and duties of the Board pertaining or incidental to the sale and issuance of the obligations herein authorized, including but not limited to authorizing bond anticipation notes and prescribing the terms, form and contents and as to the sale and issuance of the bonds herein authorized and of any bond anticipation notes issued in anticipation of said bonds, and the renewals of said notes, are hereby delegated to the President of the Board, the chief fiscal officers of the School District.
SECTION 6. The President of the Board is further authorized to take such actions and execute such documents as may be necessary to ensure the continued status of the interest on the bonds authorized by this resolution, and any notes issued in anticipation thereof, as excludable from gross income for federal income tax purposes pursuant to Section 103 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code”) and to designate the bonds authorized by this resolution, and any notes issued in anticipation thereof as a “qualified tax-exempt bond” in accordance with Section 265(b)(3)(B)(i) of the Code.
SECTION 7. The President of the Board is further authorized to enter into a continuing disclosure agreement with the initial purchaser of the bonds or notes authorized by this resolution, containing provisions which are satisfactory to such purchaser in compliance with the provisions of Rule 15c2-12, promulgated by the Securities and Exchange Commission pursuant to the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
SECTION 8. By separate resolution, the Board has complied with the provisions of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (“SEQRA”) with respect to the Project by issuing a negative declaration determining that the Project will not have a significant effect on the environment.
SECTION 9. The expected source of funds to be used initially to pay for the expenditures authorized by Section 1 of this resolution shall be from the School District’s General Fund. The School District then reasonably expects to reimburse any such expenditure with the proceeds of the bonds or bond anticipation notes authorized by Section 2 of this resolution. This resolution shall constitute the declaration of the School District’s “official intent” to reimburse the expenditures authorized by Section 1 hereof with the proceeds of the bonds and notes authorized herein, as required by United States Treasury Regulation Section 1.150-2.
SECTION 10. The validity of said serial bonds or of any bond anticipation notes issued in anticipation of the sale of said serial bonds may be contested only if:
(a) (1) Such obligations are authorized for an object or purpose for which said School District is not authorized to expend money, or
(2) The provisions of law which should be complied with at the date of publication of this resolution are not substantially complied with,
and an action, suit or proceeding contesting such validity is commenced within twenty days after the date of such publication; or
(b) Said obligations are authorized in violation of the provisions of the Constitution of the State of New York.
SECTION 11. The Clerk of the School District is hereby authorized and directed to publish this resolution, or a summary thereof, together with a notice in substantially the form provided by Section 81.00 of said Local Finance Law, in the official newspaper or newspapers having a general circulation in said School District and hereby designated as an official newspaper of said School District for such publication.
SECTION 12. This resolution shall take effect immediately upon its adoption.
The forgoing resolution was duly put on a vote on a roll call, which resulted as follows:
- Brian Crandall VOTING: YES
- Mark Conley VOTING: YES
- Diann Fischer VOTING: YES
- Patricia Giffune VOTING: YES
- Michele Gilbert VOTING: YES
- Robert Mihevc VOTING: YES
- Scott Petucci VOTING: YES
All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0.
Upon recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Mr. Petucci, seconded by Ms. Fischer to accept the draft copy of the 2019-2020 Budget Calendar as presented. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0.
Board of Education Reports
Upon recommendation of Superintendent Miller, on a motion made by Mr. Conley, seconded by Ms. Fischer to accept the following resolution:
WHEREAS, it is customary practice of the BOE to have three readings of a policy prior to its adoption; and
WHEREAS, the BOE wishes to adopt one policy recommended by the Policy Committee, to wit, Equal Opportunity and Prohibition of Discrimination and Harassment (Including Sexual Harassment) #0015, on an expedited basis so that such policy will be effective immediately; and
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the BOE hereby waives the BOE’s customary practice of three readings prior to the adoption of policies, and adopts the following policy, incorporated by reference in the minutes of this meeting:
- Equal Opportunity and Prohibition of Discrimination and Harassment (Including Sexual Harassment) #0015
All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.
President Crandall congratulated all the fall athletes who were recognized this evening for obtaining an above 90 average for the first marking period. It was a great turnout between the students and their parents.
Future Meeting Dates
Superintendent Miller reminded the Board that the next regularly scheduled Board of Education meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday, January 16, 2019, at 6 p.m. in the Jr./Sr. High School Cafeteria, and he confirmed that a quorum would be present for that meeting.
Mr. Petucci, this evening’s meeting evaluator, presented his review of the December 19, 2018, Board of Education meeting. It was a good meeting; well attended. Appreciates getting all the documents well ahead of time. All aspects of the meeting evaluation were effectively met. All in favor: motion carried 7:0.
Mr. Conley moved and Ms. Fischer seconded a motion to move into an executive session for the purpose of discussing negotiations with the Herkimer Faculty Association (HFA), and a matter involving the potential discipline of a particular employee. The Board may take action in public session after the executive session ends and the Board returns to public session. All voted in favor, motion carried 7:0.
The Board moved into Executive Session at 7:30 p.m.
President Crandall declared the public meeting reconvened at 8:35 p.m.
On a motion made by Mr. Conley seconded by Ms. Fischer the BOE adjourned the public meeting at 8:36 p.m. All voted in favor; motion carried 7:0.