The Alternative Facilities Program is a program authorized by State statute which permits qualifying school districts bonding or levy authority to finance deferred capital expenditures for maintenance necessary to prevent further erosion of facilities, and disabled access upgrades.
A qualifying school district must have a ten-year plan approved by the Commissioner of the Department of Children Families and Learning (DCFL) that includes an inventory of projects and estimated project costs. The school district must annually update the plan, and biennially submit a facility maintenance plan to the DCFL for renewal of bonding or levy authority.
Maintenance, and capital renewal - the replacement of building system components that have reached the end of their useful life or have become obsolete, are permitted with DCFL authorization. Enhancements that go above and beyond the replacement of existing facility components are not authorized under the program. Expenditures for equipment, furniture and technology systems and components are specifically excluded from program funding by DCFL.
- Determine and implement the best practices for the use of current technology, methods, products and materials for maintenance and construction.
- Develop project designs that will achieve low life cycle costs through maintainable installations that are long lasting and energy efficient.
- Support the mission of the Office of Health and Safety to provide a safe and healthy place for students, staff and visitors. Support facility operators in providing consistent comfort levels within selected ranges.
- Perform a comprehensive planning, budgeting and scheduling process that features effective communications with facility administrators, operators and users.
- All facilities systems and components are categorized within sixteen asset categories as designated by DCFL. Funds are budgeted for maintenance activities in all of the categories based on the assessment of needs, prioritization and project approval.
- Maintenance and capital renewal of roofs, exterior wall systems, hardscape (pavement and sidewalks), heating/ventilating/air conditioning systems (HVAC), and flooring, is of primary importance in providing a safe, healthy and comfortable environment. Roofs, exterior wall systems, hardscape, HVAC, and flooring represent big investments relative to other asset categories, and there are severe implications in allowing these systems to fall into disrepair. It follows that these five asset categories receive priority consideration in the allocation of Alternative Facilities funds.
- A comprehensive information gathering effort (facilities maintenance surveys) will be conducted annually, with the involvement of building chiefs and facility administrators. Maintenance deficiencies known by the Facilities and Grounds Department and deficiencies reported via facilities maintenance surveys or other means are given a priority score through an objective scoring process. Maintenance and projects are funded and implemented based on the results of the prioritization process. The annual Alternative Facilities Maintenance Plan will be communicated to Administrators, Building Chiefs and all other interested parties.