The final piece of the field puzzle was amended onto an already approved contract at Monday night’s Lawrence school board meeting.
The amendment approves the purchase of turf for softball and soccer fields at both Lawrence and Free State high schools. It also contracts work for tennis court surfaces and related site work that needs to be done for the athletic field upgrades.
The last turf package will cost the district just under $3.5 million. That brings the total contract with GeneralSports Venue LLC to just over $8.5 million.
After the final turf approval, the focus is now on accessories.
“We can turn to the lighting package, parking and bleachers for various events,” Tom Bracciano, the district’s division director of operations and facility planning, said in an interview last week. “Not only are we looking for bleachers for the football field, we’ve got them for softball, soccer, baseball as well and tennis, too.”
Superintendent Randy Weseman also talked briefly about the state shorting school districts on payments.
“We haven’t heard anything official from Topeka,” he said. But he said the board should know that the potential for less base state aid is there, especially when it comes to replacing some of the administrative positions that will be empty after a number of retirements. “We’re only halfway through the fiscal year. That may have some impact on how we look at positions and that might be part of the plan.”