Proceedings of the Board of Trustees
Lockwood School District No. 26
Yellowstone County, Billings, MT
Regular Meeting of December 9, 2008
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Chair Susanne Vinton opened the regular meeting, called it to order at 7:00 p.m., and led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The following trustees and officers were present: Trustees Susanne Vinton, Jason Hamrick, Holly Sather, Peter Freivalds, Greg Bochy, and Tamara Spillum, Superintendent Eileen Johnson and District Clerk Diane Brook. Trustee Becky Malenowsky was absent.

Staff members present were Dave DeBoer, Mike Bowman, Don Christman, Art Anderson, Sue Robertson, Vicki Balgua, and Patti Doble.

Registered guests were Mark Jones, Shane Flohr, Evelyn Pyburn, Jared Swartz, Beth Shumate, and Scott Chartier.

Mrs. Vinton welcomed visitors and advised the following:

Any person present who wishes to address the board or raise any question about public school district matters or governing policies may do so under public participation. No discussion of personnel or individual students is permitted at this time. A limit of three minutes is placed on each speaker. Persons who want more time may make arrangements to be placed on a future agenda. The public is also reminded that they may provide input on all motions being considered by the board at this meeting.


Chair Vinton advised a thank-you card had been received from Huntley Project Schools.


A. Approval of Minutes

Chair Vinton asked if there was any objection to the minutes as presented with the date corrections noted. Hearing none, the minutes of the November 11, 2008 regular board meeting, and the November 25, 2008 special board meeting were approved.

B. Approval of Bills

Chair Susanne Vinton asked if there was any objection to the bills and wages as presented. Hearing no objection, the bills and wages were approved.

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Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2008

C. Building Project Update and Decision Regarding Bid Pack 4

Representatives from JGA (Terry Sukut), ACE (Jared Swartz), High Tech (Shane Flohr and Scott Chartier), and Star Service (Mark Jones) were present.

Chair Vinton read aloud correspondence received from the Intermediate Building staff regarding air conditioning.

They now have the costs put together for the remainder of Bid Pack 4. We have two additional numbers with up-to-date pricing for items that had been value engineered out of the project. A decision will need to be made concerning the cooling component for the Bid Pack 4 and whether or not to add cooling back into the Middle School.

Eileen advised that the figure of $387,685 for the addition of cooling was updated from the cost of $346,500 that was provided previously in the agenda packet.

Scott Chartier talked about the Bid Pack 4 contingency, and he advised that they have not used any part of it yet. He cautioned about planning to have the entire amount available for cooling prior to finishing the existing HVAC project next spring, as it is possible that they will run into things for which they will need contingency monies.

There is $41,000 contingency remaining after completion of the Middle School.

Jared from ACE also expressed concerned about planning to use the entire contingency toward the cooling project.

Chair Vinton noted that that the project was originally bid in January 2007, and cooling was bid as a deductive alternate. From January 2007 to December 2008 the cost increased 31 percent; Sue asked for explanation of Mark Jones, Star Plumbing, for this steep increase.

Mark responded that working the tunnels is much more time consuming than originally thought. Prices have increased for labor, equipment, pipe, valves, fittings, hangers, and the chiller. Labor needed for the project increased by 500 hours over what was originally planned.

It was noted that the cost estimates to add cooling to the Middle School increased 71 percent, while the Intermediate increased 31 percent.

Scott Chartier advised that we are in a period of extreme inflation in the construction market. In reference to the middle school, he said doing something after the fact is always more expensive as it is a retrofit.

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Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2008

Jared Swartz said the middle school costs might be a little high. They had re-routed the piping in the middle school cooling project to try to save money; the cost estimate was $50,000 higher previous to drawing the re-routing over the roof. Jared thought the intermediate building cooling costs would come in about the same as those provided by Star if it was re-bid in today’s market.

Trustee Greg Bochy asked Facilities Manager Art Anderson for his opinion. Art said if the cooling portions of Bid Pack 4 were re-bid and another company got the bid, it could cause some work problems such as: scheduling issues for work in the tunnels; potential for the controls to become confused; possibility of different control contractors. He believes for simplicity of completing the work the school district would benefit by continuing on with Star.

Eileen advised that she is in favor of moving forward with it. There have been complaints about the heat in Sturdevant Gym from the public for a long time. She is concerned due to increased costs. She stated she would feel more comfortable if the contractors would hold these costs until spring.

Mark advised that he has bid it as tight as he can.

Scott asked if the middle school cooling could be re-bid with the same controls specified. Jared said yes, but re-bidding would create additional costs for ACE and JGA to re-draw and provide the bid documents. Jared thinks that the MS project could be re-bid in February, and it could possibly cost less.

Mike Bowman pointed out that only one plumbing sub-contractor was present. Williams Plumbing, the contractor that did the Middle School, was not in attendance.

Scott Chartier commented that Williams has been less responsive to providing timely answers about the numbers. Mark was willing to come here tonight.

Peter asked when the project is scheduled to end. The project must be completed by December 31, 2009.

Sue asked how much it would cost to put the cooling projects out to bid. JGA estimated the costs of the re-draw to route the pipes over the building and other related items at $28,029. Because of these costs the district would have to save about $30,000 by re-bidding the middle school project to break even.

Trustee Peter Freivalds asked if $100,000 would be enough contingency for the remainder of Bid Pack 4. There was consensus among ACE, JGA, High Tech Construction, and Star that $100,000 should be enough contingency.

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Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2008

Trustee Freivalds moved to proceed with the cooling portion of Bid Pack 4 in the Intermediate school, using contingency funds available after reserving $100,000 for completion of the existing Bid Pack 4 project, One-Time-Only Funds, General Fund, and General Fund Reserves to pay the additional costs. Jason Hamrick seconded the motion.

Jason asked for a timeframe for Williams to provide updated costs for the cooling project in the Middle School.

Teacher Vicki Balgua said that the Middle School upper floor was extremely hot last August and through the fall.

Jared said they are set up with a building purge where it will be possible to pull 100% outside air into the building at night. That will work better for cooling than how the system was set-up and working this year. He advised that the system wasn’t functioning properly last year, so it may be cooler this year with the system appropriately set up.

There was a brief discussion of the possibility of Star bidding the middle school cooling via change order. It was noted that there may be legal issues that would need to be clarified to see if this could even be a possibility.

Chair Vinton said this is a very difficult big decision. The vote was called.

Susanne Vinton, Jason Hamrick, Greg Bochy, Peter Freivalds, Holly Sather, and Tamara Spillum voted aye. The motion passed six to zero.

D. Update on Grant for Land Development

Beth Shumate updated those present on her progress with the grant. She distributed copies of the initial draft of the required Environmental Review as well as an outline of work conducted so far.

She advised that the Lockwood Fire Department is going to help with the outdoor recreation telephone survey. The firefighters will be making the completely random calls from the fire department. Beth hopes to have the survey results for the January meeting.

Beth and Jared Swartz from ACE will be meeting the first week in January to establish estimated costs for the project.

The grant must be submitted in February; Beth plans to have it completed by February 15, 2009.

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Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2008

E. 403(b) Plan Document

Trustee Peter Freivalds moved to adopt the following resolution.

BE IT RESOLVED, that the County of Yellowstone Lockwood SD No. 26 403(b) Plan set forth in the Plan Agreement, a copy of which is attached hereto, is hereby adopted.

BE IT RESOLVED FURTHER, that the District Clerk/Business Manager is hereby authorized and instructed to execute said Plan Agreement for and on behalf of the organization.

Greg Bochy seconded the motion. Susanne Vinton, Holly Sather, Tamara Spillum, Peter Freivalds, Greg Bochy, and Jason Hamrick voted aye. The motion passed six to zero. The 403(b) Plan Document was adopted via this resolution.

F. Policy Recommendations from MTSBA- Policy Nos. 1135 and 1135P

The trustees talked about these policy recommendations.

Chair Vinton said advocacy was discussed at a MTSBA meeting she attended recently. There was dialogue about contacting legislators and watching legislative process.

Peter said he dislikes adding rules when they are not needed. He thought these policies just added another layer of stuff and responsibility when it is not needed. They are already active.

Greg Bochy disagreed with Peter.

There was no action on this item.

G. Goals from the Work Session

Jason Hamrick moved to hire Julie Charpentier and Daniel Coryell as substitute teachers. Tamara Spillum seconded the motion. It was noted that both had been fingerprint background checked. Susanne Vinton, Holly Sather, Tamara Spillum, Peter Freivalds, Greg Bochy, and Jason Hamrick voted aye. The motion passed six to zero.

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Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2008

Eileen advised that there may have to be a special meeting to hire additional coaches for basketball if the numbers of students that come out require more coaches.


  1. Primary
  2. Middle School
  3. Technology
  4. Intermediate
  5. Curriculum
  6. Superintendent – Additional Insurance Information: Eileen advised the trustees that they can be part of the school’s health plan and if they serve two terms they can have the insurance as a retiree through MSGIA MUST insurance.
  7. Activities (No Report)
  8. Facilities- Art distributed information at the meeting from Creative Greenscapes about landscaping projects.

Eileen thanked the board for the luncheon. Eileen advised that Sodexo donated all of the food and supplies for Family Fun Night.




Mary Beth Gajda had asked to be on the agenda to speak to the trustees. She did not attend the meeting.


The next regular meeting is Tuesday, January 13, 2009 at 7:00 p.m.

Greg Bochy moved to adjourn the meeting at 9:30 p.m.  Peter Freivalds seconded the motion.  Susanne Vinton, Holly Sather, Tamara Spillum, Peter Freivalds, Greg Bochy, and Jason Hamrick voted aye.  The motion passed six to zero.

___________________________     ___________________________
Sue Vinton, Chairperson                       Diane M. Brook, District Clerk

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