Conditions at CAB going from bad to worse

By CAROLINE MURRAY

caroline.murray@recordernews.com

A collection of garbage cans catches the water as it falls from the second-floor ceiling in the Greater Amsterdam School District's Central Administration Building. A foul odor fills the area where the leaking roof has caused the most damage.

The roof and the aroma are issues Superintendent of Schools Thomas Perillo discussed during a board of education meeting Wednesday.

Perillo said the conditions are so bad he recently moved two food service employees from their second-floor nook to a space at the former Bacon school.

"The roof does leak and unfortunately we cannot get up there right now to spot patch like we usually do because there is snow up there and we will only make the situation worse," Perillo said.

The food service employees were relocated to an office near the Bacon amphitheater where the space was repainted and spruced up.

He was not sure if the move is permanent because the district is still discussing the move of the entire CAB to the Bacon space.

"There is a lot of work to be done before that is decided on. We want to have public forums and we are in the process of creating a survey to go out to the people," Perillo said.

The Bacon school has been targeted as a new home for the district's central administration, as the current home on Liberty Street has been declining for years.

Because the CAB does not hold students, any repairs made to the building are not eligible for state aid, meaning the costs would be drawn from the district's general fund or the taxpayers.

Perillo said the space at Bacon was the only available office for the food service workers.

In the past, maintenance and custodial workers would patch leaks when they popped up. Perillo said the current amount of snow has kept them from fixing the roof this year.

Project manager Michael Greco spoke at the meeting Wednesday. He said he talked to a contractor who estimated a new roof would cost close to $58,000.

"The roof is very old. The last time it was replaced ... I don't think ever," Perillo said.

He said since the district slowed down the Bacon relocation process and is looking for public input money will not be poured into the building until a resolution is reached.

However, he has recently discovered the Bacon school has issues of its own, including a leaking roof.

In addition, there is a set of stairs near the gymnasium that ned repair. Perillo suggested a frost heave may be to blame for the stairs pulling away from the building and cracking the floor.

"It's an unsafe situation and we will board that up until we can fix it," he said.

Currently, W1SHFUL:TH1NK1NG, a community organization, and the city Recreation Department use the Bacon facility to house after-school activities for students in the gymnasium.

Perillo said Bacon's gymnasiums are used for club activities.

"The city still runs their program up there. Thank goodness there is nothing wrong with that (the gyms)," he said.