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Batavia schools to vote on artificial turf at Bulldog Stadium

The Batavia school board will vote Tuesday on a contract to put artificial turf in Bulldog Stadium at Batavia High School this summer, when it also replaces the track.

And according to a memo to the board, the district can do so without borrowing money.

The board will be asked to hire FieldTurf USA for $451,818 to install the field carpet and infill. It will also decide whether to hire Hoppy's Landscaping Inc. to replace the track, including moving areas for field events such as the high jump; and do drainage improvements, for $967,441.

To pay for it, the district says it can budget $400,000 in 2016-17 for track maintenance; use anticipated surpluses this fiscal year and next, totaling $300,000; use $200,000 from inactive student-activity accounts; $200,000 already raised by the Bulldogs Booster club; and by raising the remaining money in private donations over the next three to five years.

Doing the projects separately would cost the district an additional $84,000 to $110,000, district officials say.

They say the track is unsafe and needs to be done sooner than later, and that a new track could be damaged by field-construction equipment rolling over it.

In an advisory referendum in November 2014, district voters said "no" to having the district borrow $15 million for buildings-and-grounds projects that included the artificial turf and the new track.

Some residents opposed borrowing money at all, and said some of the projects were wants, not needs.

Others have raised concerns about the safety of playing on artificial turf.

The board meets at 7 p.m. in the Rosalie Jones Administration Center, 335 W. Wilson St., Batavia.

More information, including the bid tabulations, can be found online at bps101.net.

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