AP NEWS

Bill comes due for GHS flooding

January 16, 2019

GREENWICH — With repairs to the flooding damage at Greenwich High School’s Performing Arts Center almost complete, the Board of Estimate and Taxation’s Budget Committee on Tuesday evening recommended approving $536,000 to cover the costs. that would be spent on repairs after , causing a hole to open up in a pipe and creating damage to both the PAC and the nearby gymnasium, as well as some surrounding rooms.

The flooding damage, from a flexible connector that burst on Dec. 12, temporarily closed the $46 million Performing Arts Center and school gymnasium for games. Both performances and GHS basketball games have had to be moved to other locations but gave a positive report to the Budget Committee on Tuesday.

“The gym (repairs are) done as of today,” Interim Superintendent of Schools Ralph Mayo told the committee. Dalene Flooring, which had performed the original work on the gymnasium, did the rehab.

“They were able to get that done a lot faster than we thought they would be able to,” Mayo said. “We had originally thought we wouldn’t be able to be done there until the 21st and now there’s a home basketball game (Wednesday) night that we will actually be able to play at home.”

Mayo reiterated Feb. 1 as the completion date for the repair work at the PAC.

“I keep saying Feb. 1 but it should be a lot sooner than that,” Mayo told the committee. “I always give that day but it should be done a lot sooner.”

The full BET will vote on the repair allocation next week as will the Representative Town Meeting.

The auditorium flooding was one of several water problems at town schools last year; others included a flood in the GHS science wing and one at Cos Cob School that caused extensive damage.

Much of the money being spent on the repairs will be covered by insurance policies.

“The expectation is that at least this damage is eligible for reimbursement and probably will cover much of the cost,” Budget Committee Chair Leslie Moriarty said.

Town Comptroller Peter Mynarski agreed but noted the $25,000 deductible that is in place for the policies covering all three incidents.

The part that caused the flooding at the PAC is being examined, Mayo told the Budget Committee. The flexible connector is in place to try and keep any noise from having an impact on the performances taking place in the Performing Arts Center.

“We are looking at that piece to see if it is the right piece for the PAC,” Mayo said. “There are 12 of those in and around the PAC. We’re looking at those and if we have to replace them, we’ll replace them.”

Another one failed in 2016, but did not cause as big a problem at the recent flooding.

Mayo is expected to go before the RTM in March to give an update on how the repair work went at GHS and Cos Cob School, including information about insurance reimbursements and costs such as custodial overtime related to the problems.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Mayo joked that he had been so focused on the flooding and the repairs at GHS that “I probably know more about this event than I do about my daughter’s upcoming wedding.”

“It will be very interesting to see how much of your budget resources you had to go into that you need to get replenished,” Budget Committee member Michael Mason said.

kborsuk@greenwichtime.com

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