The Toledo Board of Education continued Tuesday its push to get rid of unused property, and appeared set to finalize a new contract with an employee union.
The board approved a lease with a nonprofit that would allow them to use property at a demolished school site, and authorized the auction of another site. The City of Compassion Community Development Corporation plans to use the former Ryder Elementary site for gardens. The board also approved an auction of the former Whitney school site.
The sites are among 100 acres of vacant land left from the massive Building for Success program, which rebuilt and renovated dozens of schools while demolishing the old buildings.
A recent performance audit suggested that Toledo Public Schools sell off its large amount of surplus property.
TPS administrators also said Manhattan’s Restaurant on Adams Street is interested in leasing the kitchen at the Jefferson Center, which sits at 13th Street and Madison Avenue, but board members tabled that proposal. Manhattan’s wants to use the kitchen for its catering business, but board members expressed concerns that the restaurant services charter and parochial schools.
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees representative Dave Blyth, Jr., said the union had reached an agreement with district administration on a contract, with a ratification vote scheduled Thursday for union members. The board took no action on the contract Tuesday.
Mr. Blyth said that AFSCME, which represents hundreds of bus drivers, food-service workers, secretaries, skilled-trades employees, and custodians, agreed to the same financial package as the Toledo Federation of Teachers, which in September approved a fact finder’s report. That report recommended a three-year pact giving teachers, paraprofessionals, and substitutes 1 percent raises on Jan. 1, 2014, and Jan. 1, 2015.