BEVERLY - The Fort Frye Local school district will be able to save at least aquarter of a million dollars over the next year while reducing its insurance premiums.
The district, which is self-insured, was able to reduce premiums for family plans by 7.7 percent and individuals by 15.4 percent thanks to several "good years" of claims usage, Treasurer Melcie Wells told board of education members during Thursday's regular meeting at Beverly-Center Elementary School. That willsave the district approximately $125,000 in calendar year 2013.
The district will also offer a "premium holiday" in January, resulting in another savings of $125,000, without jeopardizing its self-insurance fund.
"This is a plus of about $250,000 to the general fund," Wells said, adding that that savings was not anticipated in the five-year forecast filed in October.
Superintendent Tom Gibbs noted one of the companies the district works with on its insurance said a larger discount was possible. However, the district will assess in July whether the savings projected were realized. If so, another premium holiday month could be offered, saving another $125,000.
"We're playing it safe," he said.
- 6 p.m. Jan. 10, Beverly-Center Elementary, organizational meeting, followed by regular meeting.
The district is projected to be in deficit spending for the next two years, while still maintaining a positive cash balance.
Because the district would be starting from a lower insurance cost, the amountspent in subsequent years would likely be lower than what was anticipated in the forecast, which included 15 percent increases each year, Gibbs said.
Wells praised the work of the insurance committee, which includes district employees, for helping to realize the savings.
"I think you guys (have) done an excellent job," board member Charlie Schilling said.
In other business
Johnson Controls Inc. outlined $1.7 million in improvements ranging from replacing the rooftop heating units and outdated boiler at Fort Frye High School to upgrading light and control systems at all four of the district's schools.
The portion of the work classified as immediate needs would cost an estimated $873,600 to address, and if the board approved an agreement with Johnson at its
January meeting, the work could be completed by the start of the 2013-14 school year, said Brad Estadt, area sales manager for energy solutions in Ohio.
Specific portions of the work would be decided through additional meetings with board members.
Johnson representatives emphasized working with local contractors where possible.
The presentation from Energy Optimizers focused on lighting, kitchen retrofits and installation of a Web-based system that could control all of the systems at the four schools, even though they were made by three different companies. The estimated savings would be $67,350 a year, with payback achieved in just under 10 years, company President Greg Smith said. Work could start in May and be completed by September. Smith said some work could be done while school was in session without disrupting the learning process.
Smith said Energy Optimizers does a lot of work in-house, but there is no mark-up for using subcontractors for services it doesn't provide.
Local Board of Education's Jan. 14 meeting to discuss the sharing of superintendent and treasurer services between the two districts beyond this school year. Earlier this week, Warren appointed two of its members - Bob Allen and John Nichols - to attend Fort Frye's Jan. 10 meeting to discuss the same topic.