Scheduling and Prioritization
Let’s begin the discussion with the District and stakeholders, by evaluating planning and construction concerns that impact the schedule. This will require working with the other professionals on the program to determine accurate phasing and duration for all project tasks. Once this is developed, a draft of the program schedule will be presented to all programmatic players for consensus. Your goal is to use the process of developing a program schedule as a way to develop and strengthen the program team at all levels.
Revisiting the financial plan and the comprehensive budget for your entire program is essential. Each project will have its own identity and unique characteristics, but many items will overlap. The key is to identify all the constant and miscellaneous variables to construct a complete picture and identify opportunities to save money.
Identifying all of your possible funding sources is imperative to gaining a clear scope of cash flow and project timing. Therefore, a primary step in this process is defining all projects in terms as New Construction, Modernization, Severely Overcrowded, etc. Determining the type of construction to be done will give you the understanding of the funding sources that you are eligible to pursue, such as General Obligation Bonds, Parcel Taxes, Proposition 39, 55, 1D, Mello Roos, Developer Fees, etc. Finally, to maintain the integrity of the funding that has been received, tracking the associated costs in a manner that is audit friendly to the state is highly recommended.
OPSC has recommended categories for school districts to track costs appropriately. Although these are just guidelines, we use these categories for our cost accounting to the letter. It proves to be more efficient during any audit process. The OPSC categories are:
Each category contains sub-categories with associated object codes for a complete breakdown. We advise that you develop initial budgets and associate them with each object code within OPSC categories. This sort of detail will also allow your Facility Planners to thoroughly comprehend the scope of each project from initial planning stages to close-out. Ultimately, this will lead to tighter control of project costs and will ensure that you remain in compliance with all state regulations.