Hamburg Area School Directors previously approved improvements to the high school's heating, ventilation and air conditioning system at an estimated cost of $1.4 million.

On Jan. 28, school directors unanimously agreed to include upgrades at one of the district's elementary schools to the high school HVAC project in a cost-saving move.

By lumping the two projects together the district expects to get better pricing on the estimated $1.5 million project, according to Business Manager Michele Zimmerman.

HVAC upgrades will be completed at Tilden Elementary Center and Field House this summer along with a major overhaul of the high school system, which was last upgraded in 2001.

In other news, school directors approved, by a 6-2 vote, a 2019-20 budget opt-out resolution which means the district will not raise taxes above its tax index.

By approving the opt-out the district will not be required to pass a preliminary budget, according to Zimmerman.

School directors Lolly Lesher and Leon Grim voted in opposition.

"We should never have had it on (the agenda), it's not necessary," said Lesher. "I'll not support a (tax) increase."

The district's tax index is 2.9 percent or .78 mills, according to Zimmerman.

School directors voted for no tax increase for the current school year. For the prior nine years school directors had approved a .25 mill tax yearly increase.

In other news, school directors approved by a 6-2 vote the 2019-20 school district calendar.

School directors Lesher and Maggie Rhoades voted in opposition stating that the Aug. 22 start date is too early.

"Kids are working and (many) families are away (on vacation)," Lesher said. "We need to shrink the year down and not have as many days off during the year."

School directors approved Stephanie Greaves, Sinking Spring, as a short-term substitute teacher for autistic support.

The new position is temporary for the rest of the school year and based on student need.

The position pays a per diem rate of $150 and will be reevaluated at the end of the school year.

School directors met in executive session after the meeting to discuss a property tax assessment appeal. No further information was available.

The next meeting of school directors is Monday, Feb. 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the James A. Gilmartin Community Room.

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