By WHITNEE ICE
St. Joseph Post
The St. Joseph School Board is looking to use federal COVID relief funds to pay for long over-due heating and cooling projects in the district.
A St. Louis financial firm, L.J Hart and Company will finance the project and will be reimbursed by the district with federal funding.
Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operations Gabe Edgar says the district hopes to get more federal funding for H-VAC projects throughout the district, but for now current federal funding is getting put towards these specific projects.
“The Snyder Electric project that was approved, that’s going to happen right now because of this funding was new H-VAC at Hillard Tech School, new H-VAC for the big spaces at Central High School, Lafayette High School, and Benton High School, and I say big spaces, that means the gymnasiums and auditoriums,” Edgar tells St. Joseph Post.
Larry Hart CEO of L.J. Hart says his company is the jumpstart to the funding process of the project since the ESSER funding is not an upfront payment but instead it is a reimbursement to the district.
“You have to pay for the project yourself then the government reimburses you for that expense so we need some money to pay for the first construction cost then they get reimbursed and it’s a revolving program after that,” says Hart.
Hart says this is as significant step made by the school board and administration towards improvement of the district.
“This is a very positive, proactive effort on the part of the administration and the board to just start these improvements that have been needed for a long time and without having to have the tax payers pay for them like they would have with the bond issue,” says Hart.
Snyder Electric, Heating, and Cooling will be the company working on the H-VAC systems at the schools.