Exemplified by the Kansas State University power plant’s “Frankenstein Room,” where employees had used a 10-foot wooden pole to safely flip switches, the state’s problem of deferred maintenance on campuses seemed too big and costly to solve a few years ago. But the Legislature’s multiyear strategy involving bonding and $46 million in federal stimulus funds is having some success, reducing the backlog from $904 million in 2011 to $800 million currently. “We have seen a significant decrease in our backlog. What I think it is we are seeing is the money pumped into this has really made a difference,” Eric King, director of facilities for the Kansas Board of Regents, told the Lawrence Journal-World. Even better, the expectation since 2007 is that the funding of new projects will include future maintenance. It’s good to see the state and other stakeholders working to take better care of the state assets on college campuses.
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