Shamokin Area directors spar over swimming funds
COAL TOWNSHIP - Two directors of the Shamokin Area School Board sparred Tuesday over funds raised in support of the high school swimming pool.
Bob Getchey said the funds raised in 2012 have remain untouched. He estimates it costs $125,000 annually to operate Shamokin Area's pool and wondered why none of the funds raised have been expended.
Rich Kashnoski said approximately $15,000 remains held in a fundraising account of the Shamokin Stingrays swim club. By no means is money being withheld, he said. The district has yet to submit an invoice for money to be released. He refuses to have any of the funds turned over without one, saying he feared it would commingle with other district cash and go unaccounted for.
"After 28 months, we still didn't get any money," Getchey said. "It should go to the school."
"No one asked," Kashnoski said. "You're trying to stick your hand in the cookie jar."
Nearly $25,000 was raised to benefit the swimming pool in 2012. About $10,000 was raised through a fitness event and corporate sponsorships, an effort spearheaded by former director Brian Persing.
Persing and Kashnoski clashed in April 2013 over the funds in the Stingrays account. Kashnoski said then what he repeated Tuesday - that he did not feel comfortable turning money over to the district's general fund, or any other fund, unless it was specifically earmarked for use at the pool.
Getchey suggested it be used for chemicals or other maintenance. Kashnoski balked and received support from directors Ed Griffiths and Ron McElwee, who each said maintenance costs are district responsibility. Getchey held firm, saying he believed the funds were raised in the district's name and said it could allow other booster clubs to raise funds and hold them in an account.
Kashnoski said the funds would be used to purchase new equipment, for emergency purchases or in the event the pool were facing closure. He and director Jeffrey Kashner were looking into the possibility of replacing the starting blocks at the pool. Touch pads are also being looked at, Kashnoski said after the meeting.
Getchey said the district would find a relevant expense suitable to Kashnoski and send him an invoice.
Renn's Trash Removal was contracted at $29,900 for waste disposal. The move is estimated to free up 20 hours weekly of maintenance staff labor. The district's used garbage truck, for which more than $4,000 was spent on repairs, will be put up for sale. Kashnoski was opposed.
A month-to-month lease agreement continues with Northwestern Academy, where Shamokin Area operates the regular and special education programs. The rental fee is $109,202.91 monthly, an expense the district had been looking to renegotiate.
LRG Prep LLC, of Holland, Mich., was given non-exclusive authorization to sell specified merchandise with the district's name and logo. Shamokin Area will receive half of the royalty revenues. Kashnoski was opposed.
Dr. Wayne Miller and Dr. Duane Donmoyer, of Miller-Donmoyer Family Health Center, Shamokin, were reappointed as school physicians at $2,500 each. Mandated physicals cost $4.75 and sports physicals $20. Miller was also reappointed to serve as football team physician for $50 a game.
Kashnoski and director Rosalie Smoogen each opposed both moves. Kashnoski said the contracts should be opened to other bidders. Superintendent James Zack said he doubted anyone would beat the prices, but that it could be opened next year.
Kashnoski also opposed the appointment of Dr. Ernest L. Steinhart as school dental examiner at $1.50 per exam. Smoogen voted in favor, appeased that such contracts would be open to bid next year.
The ALERTNOW service through Blackboard Inc. was renewed for $5,359.50. The automated system alerts parents to emergencies, early dismissals and the like.
Change orders totaling a combined $40,815.61 were approved for roadway patching, curb patching at the elementary school and additional asphalt for an elementary parking lot.
Floyd Frey Seal Coating will be paid $15,300 to seal coat and repair cracks in district roadways, and NRG Controls North Inc. will be paid $43,250 for HVAC parts and repairs. Getchey suggested the school board look into hiring a full-time HVAC employee in the coming year.