Levy funds make JVS roof project possible

BLOOMINGDALE – Jefferson County Joint Vocational School is getting some new cover, thanks to voters who backed a 1-mill levy last fall.

Boak and Sons Inc. Commercial Roofing of Youngtown has been contracted to undertake the estimated $340,000 project, which is the first phase of an ongoing upgrade at the facility along County Highway 22A in Bloomingdale. A lack of funds has been a longtime issue because of little support at the polls in the past, but now financing is available to help quash a never-ending problem.

School Superintendent Dr. Todd Phillipson said the current roof was well worn, leading to holes in some of the decking that needed removed.

“The roof is at least 30 years old,” he added. “We had to replace the ceiling tiles in one lab because of the water damage.”

Those woes led leaders to work with project manager Construction Resources and contract with Boak Construction to make the much-needed upgrades. Work began on the interior around June 11 and the improvements have continued ever since, save for some rainy days which delayed some of the project. Officials said it has rained a minimum of two days per week throughout the summer.

“We tore off the old roof all the way down to the deck,” added Christopher White, roofing division manager of Boak. “We tore away decking that was deteriorating and are installing a new rubber roof. The deck replacement has been needed for a long time.”

The older foam-type topper is being removed in favor of a sturdier material that should keep the building dry for years to come. A 13,000-square-foot section of the roof was being done for now, but the JCJVS Board of Education is eying a three-year timeframe to complete the entire structure.

“Boak’s goal is to get this finished by Aug. 22,” said Dr. Phillipson. “It’s on one identified section that needed repairs and we’re on schedule to repair the other sections that need attention over the next two to three years. Most of the roofing on the building will be replaced.”

The entire project could run between $1.5 million to $2 million to complete, but once it is finished the district will be saving in more ways than one.

“It will improve energy efficiency [and save on costs in the long run],” Dr. Phillipson noted.

Funding is being derived from the levy, which will generate $1.2 million annually for a period of seven years.