The Pleasanton school board is set Thursday to consider signing off on a report and resolution that would increase the fees paid to the district by any developers looking to build near school sites.
According to the district staff report, education and government codes allow school districts to impose certain fees on new developments in order to mitigate the impact on school facilities -- the impact being any new children that might come with housing developments.
"The purpose of developer fees is to help pay for the construction and reconstruction of school facilities necessitated by student population increases resulting from development," according to the report.
The report states that a justification study, which is included in the report the board will be looking to approve, found that the district is justified in collecting the legal maximum fee of $4.79 per square foot of assessable space. According to the report, the State Allocation Board recently increased that amount from $4.08.
It also increased the amount of commercial and industrial developments from $0.66 to $0.78 per square foot of chargeable covered and enclosed space, which will also be applied if the board approves the resolution on Thursday.
The justification study is used by the state to establish the nexus between new developments in a school district's boundaries and the need for either more schools, or the reconstruction of existing ones.
According to the report, one of the district’s main justifications for collecting these future development fees is because the "current enrollment is larger than its pupil capacity."
"The district, therefore, does not have sufficient capacity to house students generated by future development," according to the report. "These students will require the district to acquire new school facilities."
Before voting, the board will conduct a public hearing so that residents and other community members can weigh in on the increase.
If adopted, the adjusted fees will become effective 60 days after Thursday, meaning the district may begin levying the changes on Feb. 6.
The board's open-session meeting is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Thursday (Dec. 8). Read the full agenda here.
In other business
* The board is set to review its first interim budget report, which includes several updates now that enrollment numbers have been finalized and the state adopted its 2022-23 budget.
The first interim report is the first of two updates to the district's 2022-23 adopted budget, which was approved in June, that the board must certify -- the second report will be in March.
According to the district staff report, the district will be able to maintain its required 3% reserves in the budget for "economic uncertainties for the current fiscal year and through 2024-25, meeting the required budget certification requirement."
In the staff presentation, it also states that the district's fiscal position has improved as a result of increased state investment in the Local Control Funding Formula, which is the main way school districts get funding from the state.
But according to the presentation, the district still faces declining enrollment which impacts the budget.
That means the district must continue to right-size staff -- either by letting them go or by offering early retirement compensation -- and evaluate the need for different programs and positions that are funded by one time sources.
* As district staff continue the work in evaluating properties and assets to either keep or sell, staff will be asking for approval to enter into an agreement with 3D Strategies who will help with the process.
In the fall of 2021, the district put three of its properties on the city's Housing Element plan to be considered for reconstruction for new housing developments. Two of the properties are currently being looked at: three acres of the current district headquarters on the edge of downtown Pleasanton, at 4645 and 4665 Bernal Ave; and the Neal Property, located off Vineyard Ave between Thiessen Street and Manoir Lane.
Most of the current district office operations will be relocated during spring or summer to the new property it acquired in the Arroyo Center.
The board also recently approved the creation of the 7-11 Committee on Nov. 10, 2022, which will also help "evaluate the use of surplus space and real property and present a recommendation to the school board regarding the use or disposition of such property."
Two new members will look to be sworn into the committee as part of a separate agenda item: Urvi Shah who is a community member, parent and former candidate for the school board; and Jamie Yee, a longtime landowner, renter and former PUSD trustee for 12 years.
3D Strategies is the consultant firm that the district chose to "provide asset management services and real estate brokerage services." According to the report, the firm will help "determine the best value of its properties and the potential sale or lease."
The agreement set up by staff states that 3G Strategies would provide general consulting services and community engagement on a monthly retainer of $6,500 for a not-to-exceed amount of $65,000, according to the report.
If the district went through with the sale or lease of one of the properties, these costs would be credited toward the sale or lease fee.
"For a sale of either or both of the sites, the consultant shall be entitled to a commission equal to 3% of the gross selling price paid at close of escrow," the staff report states.
* The board will be set to approve a notice of completion for the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and the roofing reconstruction projects at six Pleasanton schools.
Part of the scope of work in the $270 million general obligation Measure I1 bond, which Pleasanton voters passed in 2016, included the replacement of roofing and HVAC systems throughout the district.
The district has completed four out of the six packages of schools and is seeking the notice of completion for the fifth one on Thursday.
The fifth package of schools included: Fairlands Elementary, Hearst Elementary, Lydiksen Elementary, Vintage Hills Elementary, Amador Valley High and Foothill High schools. All were completed this past summer, which the staff report states was the "largest HVAC and roofing project of the bond program."
* Following the completion of the fifth package of HVAC and roof repairs, district staff will be looking to get a head start with the sixth and final package of schools, which is planned for construction next summer.
District staff will be looking for board approval on Thursday to directly purchase the HVAC equipment needed for the construction projects and provide it to the contractor for installation in order to avoid any delays in the construction timeline.
The sixth package of schools to receive Measure I1 roof and HVAC repairs are the following four schools: Donlon Elementary, Mohr Elementary, Walnut Grove Elementary and Hart Middle schools.
"The sites being referenced for this package are the remaining highest-priority roofs and HVAC systems," according to the staff report.
Staff will be using the California Multiple Award Schedules (CMAS) piggyback method, which streamlines the procurement process rather than following a typical competitive bid process, to purchase the equipment.
Staff will also be asking the board to approve agreements and a resolution to contract Arntz Builders for the construction of the projects in the sixth package during a separate agenda item.
But instead of following the typical bidding process for this as well, staff will instead be seeking to award what is known as a "lease-lease back" contract.
According to the staff report, that "allows the district to select the most qualified contractor through the best value selection criteria versus being forced to select the lowest bid."
"This was especially important in this project for three reasons: the quantity and amount of HVAC units/roofing being replaced, the technical complexity of the project and the accelerated schedule," according to the staff report.
The report states that Arntz Builders stood out because of their experience with the type of work, experience with compressed scheduled HVAC projects, qualified staff and their "aggressive fee structure," which included a zero dollar fee for pre-construction.
"The next step in the process is that Arntz Builders will work with the facilities and construction department to perform pre-construction services which include but are not limited to: contractibility reviews, site condition investigation, budgeting and scheduling," the staff report reads. "During this time, Arntz Builders will also be taking bids to determine the final costs of the project, which we expect will be $9-$10 million, which is in line with the overall program budget."
Once those pre-construction services are completed, staff will bring back the total costs of the project.
* The board will be reviewing and possibly approving an agreement with Garrison Demolition and Engineering Incorporated for the demolition work at the newly acquired district office at the Arroyo Center.
In July, the school board approved the acquisition of the two-story Arroyo Center property, located at 5758 and 5794 West Las Positas Blvd., which will serve as the new district office headquarters.
The district has agreed to pay $23,480,261 to acquire the property from the current owner, ECI Four Arroyo LLC.
Staff plan to use a certificate of participation of $30 million, which is a type of financing where an investor purchases a share of the lease revenues of a program, and the future tenant payments from electron microscopy firm Gatan Inc., to pay for the space and any future renovation and construction projects.
Then on Aug. 25, the board approved the second phase agreement with DSK Architects for the tenant improvement project, which includes the demolition work.
"The Facilities and Construction team met with DSK Architecture from September to November 2022 to develop demolition drawings," the staff report reads. "DSK submitted the demolition drawings to the city of Pleasanton for over the counter approval on November 4, 2022 and received approval the same day."
Just a couple of weeks ago on Nov. 22, the district received two bids for the project and ended up going with Garrison Demolition and Engineering Inc. for the amount of $81,950.
According to the staff report, the bid is "within the acceptable range of the engineer's estimate and the project is trending on budget."