Town-wide efficiency

Written by Administrator
 | Wednesday, 18 December 2013 15:50

Facilities Director Brian Cherry hopes to streamline preventive and corrective maintenance at town buildings with improvements in software and staffing, selectmen learned through a presentation Monday night.

When Cherry was hired, he was asked to give an update after his first six months on the job on the conditions of buildings around town and a plan for future improvement. In an effort to expedite the improvement, Cherry gave a presentation to the Board of Selectmen Monday night, a mere four months after becoming the town’s first Facilities Director.

Cherry began the presentation with an overview of the Facilities Department’s primary functions, including supporting the local government and education facilities. Included in the department scope are preventative and corrective maintenance, life safety systems including fire alarms and sprin- kler systems, air quality and automation controls and building and grounds work.

The preventative maintenance plan encompasses everything the department manages, including boiler and pressure valve inspections, HVAC control, fire detection systems, emergency lighting system and sprinkler systems. Most of the services are conducted on either an annual and semi-annual basis.

The corrective mainte- nance plan includes work orders for non-emergency needs for the school and town buildings. Cherry proposed using a software system for tracking word orders for the entire town in order to improve efficiency. The schools currently use a software program called SchoolDude, a centralized system for managing facilities, maintenance and technology needs.

Duxbury schools are currently paying $6,681 annually for the software renewal. Cherry said he plans on rolling out the software system, fully populated with all the town’s building information, on July 1, 2014. The one-time cost to start up the software system is $1,307 and the annual renewal for the town will be $2,570. The total cost for July 1, 2014 will be $10,558 and the annual renewal on July 1, 2015 will be $9,251.

Selectman David Madigan asked Cherry to specify where the funds for the software rollout came from, since there is not one central fund for facilities maintenance. Cherry said the funds have been withdrawn from two locations, the central building fund at the town level and the extraordinary maintenance fund at the school level.

“We are doing business as it has been done in the past,” Cherry said. “When work is generated at the town level, we go through the DPW director and at the school we are drawing off of their accounts.”

Cherry also proposed hiring a heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) technician to help improve efficiency with work requests across the town. The town currently pays roughly $151,000 for HVACR services, and current building maintenance staff salaries total approximately $202,000. Cherry’s proposal for an

HVACR technician includes a reduction in annual operating costs because it will consolidate contracts for maintenance staff and improve efficiency across the town, he said. The technician would also provide IT support, food services support and would be available 24 hours a day to respond to the needs of the town. The technician would cost the town b tween $50- $60,000 annual, plus benefits and overtime.

Cherry also provided a break-down of custodial ser- vices labor needs in the town, including at the fire department, crematory, police department, Wright building, water department and recreation department. He provided a flow chart for the scope of work and the process through which work requests must go for each building.

“My focus tonight was to flood you with as much information on the facilities maintenance process,” Cherry told selectmen. “We haven’t had enough time to provide a complete file on all the buildings’ conditions in town, but we will have that for the next presentation.”