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County Officials deny budget cuts to new high school

Posted on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 9:00 am

County Administrator Norm Risavi denied rumors and information reported in the news that Westmoreland County has proposed to cut the construction budget of the new high school by an estimated $5 million. “That is not true,” Risavi stated, “In the very beginning our target number has always been $40 Million.”
Risavi suggested that discussion during a previous board meeting might have led to the misinterpretation of some of the financial information presented during the meeting.
Board of Supervisors Chairman Darryl Fisher had asked the board members for their comments. “A supervisor from our district here asked me to comment on a meeting that he and I attended along with our vice chairman Mr. Hinson when they were meeting with their architect,” Risavi said.
“They were in the process of doing some value engineering to reduce the original ‘wish list’ or preliminary list that everybody had gathered up which was estimated around $49 million. They were going through and itemizing things and reducing items and shrinking some areas of the facility and there was a long list of things and that was one of the meetings where we first discussed the difference between a full fledged auditorium and flex space, but the $40 million has always been the target number that the Board of Supervisors has asked the School Board to work with from the very beginning,” Risavi said.
“I believe that people may have misinterpreted comments from a previous article because all the information that was fully discussed at the meeting was not actually reported, therefore implying that the Board of Supervisors directed a reduction or a cut or something and that’s not the case.”
Fisher stated “One of the things, if nothing else, is to get the facts out as to what we’re faced with and how we’re trying to work towards the numbers, rather than what was preprinted as a cut, a reduction, a change to get an understanding that the numbers that reach in totality involved a lot of other, or for lack of a better word, finagling finance that really wasn’t disclosed in the contributions that the school system and the county will make to reach the total number of cost versus borrowed money.

For the full article pick up a copy of this weeks Westmoreland Newspaper 2/28/18