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In Brief: Northville School Board Approves Contract with Private Custodial Company

Highlights from Northville's school board meeting Tuesday night.

Contract with private cleaning company approved

In a move that , Northville’s school board unanimously approved Tuesday night a contract to privatize the district’s custodial services.

In September, the board voted to privatize with Grand Rapids Building Services (GRBS.) The move drew criticism from some parents, community members and a group of custodians at that meeting. The board has maintained that the change was necessary to save the district money necessary to divert money to classroom teaching.

Superintendent Mary Kay Gallagher told the board that GRBS has been through the schools over the past week and has developed a plan, which she called “impressive.”

The , which is when the board voted for the layoffs to take effect.

Gallagher further told the board that, as they have expected, the number of custodian absences has increased as their final days with the district near.

Bid for new artificial turf approved

The board also approved a contract with Pontiac-based George W. Auch Co. to oversee construction of artificial turf at the Eight Mile athletic facility.

Gallagher explained that the funding would come from two sources: the Northville Education Foundation (NEF) and dollars from the district's .

The company selected was one of two which was vying for the job. It was not the company with the lowest bid. Board member Joe Hige explained that the artificial turf study committee, which reviewed the bids, felt that they were getting greater expertise and oversight for their dollars with Auch.

According to district documents, the total cost would be $169,060.

"The committee generally believed that the on-site construction supervision and the inclusion of architectural support to provide a master plan for the Eight Mile Stadium site justified Auch’s increased bid," the document reads.

The other bid, from McCarthy & Smith, Inc., would have cost $90,170.

Hige said that the artificial turf phase is one of a few big changes planned for the high school's stadium area. Other changes will include lighting improvements, changes to the press box, concessions, restrooms, and upgrades to fencing, sidewalks and such.

Board president Joan Wadsworth thanked the NEF for raising the funds.

The agreement will now be reviewed by the NEF and Auch.

novi November 18, 2011 at 03:58 PM
Novi has GCA for custodians and the quality of the cleaning is terrible. The turn over rate is very high. So good luck Northville.
Denise Nash November 18, 2011 at 05:24 PM
@erbrel - Who cares who is paying for the turf? I don't care about that. What I do care about is that these people were loyal employees of the district. In the same meeting, probably (I don't know, I wasn't there) minutes between the two issues, the board fired them all, then agreed to spend huge money on a luxury called ASTROTURF! Can you understand where that might seem insensitive? Where that might be unfeeling to the plight of long time NPS employees? Or do you just not care? It's time we all started to care about our fellow middle class people, all of them. Because the next person who's head is on the chopping block just might be ours and we might need another person's help or sympathy to get through the ordeal.
novi November 18, 2011 at 06:11 PM
the adminstration does not care!! They say it is all about money. Lets see how the cleaning in done and the service the custodians give the public. These companies clean and that is all. The northville custodians did alot more than than just clean!
vivi November 23, 2011 at 02:51 PM
I hope you are CORRECT, ConcernedParent, that another millage request will go down in flames!!! This is unbelievable!
vivi November 23, 2011 at 02:53 PM
Doesn't matter: in this economy, this is the LAST thing anyone should be worrying about or purchasing.

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