By Derik Vanderford firstname.lastname@example.org
August 13, 2014
JONESVILLE — During Monday’s meeting of the Union County Board of School Trustees, district finance director Lynn Lawson provided answers to questions he was asked at the board’s previous meeting.
On July 28, Lawson was asked by board members why there is not a ramp at the Jonesville Elementary/Middle School football bleachers, and he was asked to provide information about adding a ramp to those bleachers on Monday.
Lawson reported that the current bleachers were moved from the former Jonesville High School to JEMS in 2009.
“At that time, the school was inspected by the Office of School Facilities and approved to open,” Lawson said. “There were no written findings about ADA compliance.”
Lawson said he asked a company which specializes in bleacher construction and installation about adding a ramp to the existing bleachers.
“Their response was that they could not just add a ramp,” Lawson said. “If they did anything today, they would have to bring the entire bleacher structure up to 2014 ADA access requirements. That would require multiple structural additions and modifications across the entire length of the bleachers to create wider aisles and spaces for wheelchair seating.”
Lawson said the cost for such construction would be approximately $30,000. Lawson was then asked by board members if a separate, smaller platform could be constructed for handicapped seating, without modifying the existing structure.
“There are situations where ‘reasonable accommodations’ can be made to satisfy the requirements, however, the answer that we have received on the separate platform has been that it would not satisfy the ADA requirement for equal access,” Lawson said on Tuesday.
Lawson said additional research will be done, and the discussion will continue during a meeting at a later date.