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Federal bill could help aging Clark County school campuses

Posted at 8:25 PM, Mar 20, 2019

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — On many Clark County School District school campuses, band-aids aren't just for scraped knees on the playgrounds; they are also what crews use to repair leaky roofs, broken air conditioners, and other repair issues.

The adhesive patches aren't being used but the term is what maintenance crews call the repairs they are forced to make to keep the aging infrastructure going so students can learn.

The tactic is technically called deferred maintenance and was the focus of Senator Catherine Cortez-Masto's visit to Hoggard Elementary School Tuesday where she was led around the 67-year-old campus.

"I like to say this building is gently used and greatly loved," Principal Stacey Scott-Cherry said.

CCSD says 68 percent of its schools are more than two decades old.

That leads to those maintenance problems that aren't always easy to see.

When it comes to budget shortfalls, those issues also aren't the highest priority.

"They are in the walls, they are in the electrical, they are in the walls, it is the carpeting, the paint, the ceilings," Scott-Cherry said.

Senator Cortez Masto is taking a hard look at the issues as she recently introduced the Rebuild America's Schools Act.

It would provide $100 billion in grants to repair and modernize schools over the next decade.

"Make sure that it is nor t just that they have access to broadband and use of high technology but that they are not in trailers, that air conditioning works and it is not leaking in the middle of a classroom," Cortez Masto said.

The bill would require comprehensive studies of the physical condition of schools once every five years and a move toward green building practices.