Niles school projects delayed because of high cost of labor

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It’s good if you’re a public official to see so many improvements taking place due to construction in Michiana. But if you’re in need of affordable labor…not so much.

That’s the problem that’s plaguing Niles Community Schools these days. Voters passed a bond issue earlier this year worth $40 million that will see major updates at eight schools. However, the district is having to spend beyond its budget for labor, according to WSBT.

Work at Ballard Elementary and Eastside Connections has been delayed due to supply and demand. There aren’t enough workers to do the work because they’re busy with other projects in the region.

Niles Superintendent Dan Applegate told WSBT that all the improvements at Notre Dame are a big reason for the lack of labor. That’s because a lot of the work being done there is being done by the same people that typically do work at school districts, too.

New bids for the laundry list of projects that need to be done will go out in the fall. The cost now for the projects is projected around $50 million, $10 million more than the original $40 million budget, according to Applegate.

One bit of good news: work at Howard/Ellis Elementary in Niles is well underway.

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