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  • Fairbury News staff

Bidding process begins

An architect's drawing of new football bleachers is shown to the PC School Board Monday night.

During a special meeting Monday night, the Prairie Central Board of Education authorized bidding of a new set of football field bleachers as specified by Middleton and Associates architects.

The new bleachers would seat approximately 1,200 individuals compared to the current seating which is slightly more than 1,000. This is all ADA accessible and a press box includes different rooms with a couple of media areas. The steel frame would have room for storage underneath.

A fence is not part of this particular proposal but still drew quite a bit of discussion among board members. The idea of a fence is to alleviate issues with unsupervised kids spending time behind the bleachers during home games. New field lighting is another issue the board will be dealing with in the future.

Bids will be let Feb. 18 and the board is expected to make a decision during the Feb. 20 regular meeting.

Fuel purchasing was another item discussed by board members during Monday’s special meeting. Rather than working with a contract strategy where a percentage is locked in, the group decided to seek fuel bids.

“It’s our obligation to make sure we are getting the best deal we can,” said board member Tim McGreal.

Superintendent Paula Crane reported the district’s fuel consumption went down last year. Generally, between 50,000 and 55,000 gallons of diesel is used each year. Monday’s price was at $2.32 but many price fluctuations have taken place due to uncertainty with Iran and the coronavirus.

“You have a lot more to lose on the upside than the downside,” board member John Wilken said.

Member Lori Schahrer believes the goal is to get the best price while still thinking about what it takes to get that pricing accomplished. If there are concerns about pleasing people, Crane feels the bidding process is a way to handle that.

A motion was made to authorize bidding of the price per gallon of bulk diesel fuel in the amount of 40,000 gallons. Bids will be opened two days ahead of the Feb. 20 school board meeting.

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