Facilities maintenance a looming issue for Poway Unified

The Poway Unified School District is facing a growing dilemma after its facilities condition assessment report showed the district could face a liability of up to $811 million in facilities maintenance costs by 2045.

The district’s maintenance liability in 2019 is $94.7 million, caused by a backlog of deferred maintenance. This backlog is due to the fact that with the introduction of the Local Control Funding Formula, the state eliminated deferred maintenance funding to districts, according to Phelps. She said other districts have dealt with the cost of facilities maintenance by issuing general obligation bonds. “(Issuing general obligation bonds) is the only way to maintain facilities,” Phelps said.

The maintenance referred to in the report is capital investments, not ongoing costs, such as replacing an HVAC system at the end of its lifespan, not normal maintenance costs.

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