GCMS seeks state funds for help with new roof

GCMS seeks state funds for help with new roof

GIBSON CITY – The school district is hoping a $175,000 matching grant from the state will pay half the estimated cost of a new roof over most of the elementary school.

At a recent special meeting, board members approved Superintendent Chuck Aubry's application for the matching dollar grant program that is being administered by the Illinois State Board of Education.

The proposed project would replace a nearly 20-year-old roof over classroom space, plus the gymnasium, office and cafeteria areas.

Aubry said the 46,350 square feet of roofing is past its warranty and life expectancy. The roof was also damaged during a 2009 wind storm and portions were recently repaired with insurance payments.

The remaining portion of the GCMS Elementary School roof over the north end's kindergarten classrooms and unit offices was replaced in 2008 and is not included in the proposed project.

The state program will provide up to $250,000 in state-funded matching dollars per district for projects costing up to $500,000 that improve energy efficiency. The GCMS application is being filed under the program's insulation category. Energy savings from new roof insulation were calculated to be $1,200 per year.

Aubry told board members there is no guarantee the district's application will be approved. If the grant is approved, Aubry said he expects the school to pay its matching $175,000 share from existing operations and maintenance or life safety funds.

The roof has been leaking for some time, however, Aubry said. "The need is not going to go away," he cautioned.