Construction Watch

Construction worker shortage worsens

Construction demand is up dramatically in Texas, partially because of the large number of school construction bond issues approved this year. Meanwhile, many construction workers are finding better jobs elsewhere. But the shortage has been decades in the making. Middle and high schools started dropping vocational courses four decades ago in favor of curriculums focusing on preparing students for college.

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Montgomery County leader asks for over $200 million for construction

The Maryland public school district's superintendent is recommending that $220.8 million be added to the district’s current six-year school construction plan in order to address significant space needs in the school system. The majority would restore the timeline of projects that were delayed last year.

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Bill to curb construction noise near New York City schools gains support

A bill to protect children from harmful noise during construction next to school buildings is gaining momentum in the City Council. The proposed Intro 420 bill would require that construction noise next to city schools not reach above 45 decibels and would task the Department of Environmental Protection with providing regular enforcement.

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Native American schools are struggling

Federally owned schools for Native Americans on reservations are marked by remoteness, extreme poverty and a lack of construction dollars. More than 60 school buildings are listed in poor condition. An estimated $1.3 billion is needed to replace or refurbish these schools.

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Changes proposed for largest Maryland school system's facility guidelines

The Montgomery County school system’s guidelines for planning future school construction projects may undergo several changes, including ones that would affect preferred enrollment and school site sizes.

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School construction bond and levy proposed for Cleveland construction

Cleveland's school district has put Issue 4, a 37-year, $200 million bond issue and 0.5-mill continuing levy for maintenance, on the ballot this November. The maintenance levy will raise $25 million a year. The bond will help the district replace about 20 additional schools, improve 20 to 23 other schools and maintain facilities.

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Tennessee district's board approves tax hike for school construction

The Lakeland Board of Commissioners moved toward financing new school construction for what would be called Lakeland Prep. The board signaled its intent to raise the city’s property tax rate to finance construction of the new combined middle and high school for the Lakeland school system.

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$78.8 million approved for Ohio district's high school design plans

The Cleveland Heights-University Heights school board approved the schematic design for the $78.8 million Cleveland Heights High School renovation, despite the project coming in 4 percent –- more than $3.1 million –- over budget.

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Budget passed in N.C. city includes money for two new schools

The Asheville City Board of Education approved a budget that includes the construction of two new schools. The $109 million schools budget includes $55 million for capital outlay. In addition to the new elementary and middle schools, city schools have about $989,000 in other capital projects.

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Washington district's voters weigh largest-ever school bond

The Toledo School District is asking voters to approve a $23.5 million bond to remodel outdated features at its high school and make additional renovations to the elementary and middle schools. This is the school district’s first bond vote in 18 years.

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