Attention: Contractors and Architects/Engineers.
Please see Links to the right for Construction and Facilities Contracting Information on the LCS Purchasing website.
The Office of Facilities & Construction provides safe, professional, efficient, high quality, and cost-effective facilities management and construction services for the Leon County School District.
The Leon County Schools’ office of Facilities and Construction is committed to the most responsible expenditure of taxpayer resources as it focuses on providing a safe, comfortable and energy-efficient learning environment for students. It is imperative that the fundamental needs of our students are met in order for them to learn and achieve.
How are capital projects funded?
Leon County Schools’ capital projects are funded by several revenue sources. The first is local property tax. School districts may levy up to 1.5 mils on property tax to be used for capital projects. The Leon County School District receives approximately $20 million annually from this revenue source. The second source of capital outlay funding is the half-cent sales tax. This tax was renewed in November 2012 by voter referendum. The District receives approximately $18 million annually from this revenue source. The third source of capital outlay revenue is the state Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO) fund. In recent years, the District has not received any funds from this source.
How can capital outlay funds be used?
Capital Outlay funds can be used for real property items — land, buildings, including fixtures and fixed equipment, structures, etc. — including additions, replacements, major repairs and renovations to real property that materially extend its useful life or materially improve or change its functional use. Also included is operating capital outlay necessary to build, furnish and operate a new or improved facility.
What is the process for creating the capital outlay budget?
Leon County Schools engages in a very thorough and transparent process for determining construction projects and prioritizing these projects.
Leon County Schools has a Capital Outlay Committee that meets several times prior to preparation of the annual budget to receive requests from various departments for projects to be funded by capital outlay dollars. The committee evaluates these requests based on school Board priorities, and budgets capital outlay dollars for projects. The committee consists of citizens, a LCS District Advisory Council representative, a school Board member, school administrators and District administrators.
Each meeting begins with an update on revenues and expenditures provided by the District Finance Department. After presentations are made, the committee deliberates and creates a budget. This budget is provided to the Superintendent and, with his/her approval, the recommended annual budget is provided to the Board for its approval.
How are construction projects determined?
The Educational Plant Survey is a systematic study of the District’s present educational and ancillary plant facilities as well as the determination of future needs.
The purpose of the Educational Plant Survey is to aid in formulating plans for required housing for the educational activities of students and staff of the District for the next several years. The survey also must consider the local comprehensive plan in its forecast strategies. The development of this plan must be based on careful study of all available data regarding the current status of educational and ancillary facilities in relation to capital outlay, full-time equivalency student membership (also known as COFTE), and projected changes in COFTE student membership.
NOTE: Educational Plant Survey COFTE student projections are determined by the Office of Economic and Demographic Research (EDR) Florida Legislature. Each five-year survey is based on COFTE projections that are five full years from the official beginning of the survey period — July 1 of the first full year of the survey period.
There are several other steps in creating a school plant survey.
- One step is to compare the school space inventory with the facilities list to make sure space is available for the projected students in that school. The facilities list identifies the standard school programs by grouping and listing the classrooms and support spaces that districts normally consider the most ideal for meeting the district’s needs.
- The next step is to meet with project coordinators and maintenance staff to see what renovation or remodeling needs have been identified.
- After that, the construction staff meets with principals and directors to discuss items they feel need to be addressed at their school or site.
This process is also followed for the District’s administrative offices.
If more student stations already exist than the projected COFTE figures for elementary, middle or high schools, the District is not allowed to build additional student stations using 1.5 mil tax revenues.
What is the process for awarding construction projects to contractors?
School Boards may employ procedures to contract for construction of new facilities, or for additions, remodeling, renovation, maintenance, or repairs to existing facilities that will include, but not be limited to: competitive bids, design-build, construction management entities, program management entities, and day-labor projects as established in Florida Statutes 1013.
Construction firms must be pre-qualified as provided in Florida Statutes 1013.46(2) and State Requirements for Educational Facilities, Section 4.1. Firms are pre-qualified by the District based on the following criteria: proof of valid contractor’s license, evidence that the contractor has the financial resources to start up and follow through on projects, evidence of experience within the last five years of at least two other projects of similar size, and evidence of satisfactory resolution of any claims filed by or against the contractor. Contractors are pre-qualified for one (1) year terms and shall be renewed annually.