Helena School Officials Adjust to Higher Construction Costs

District Facilities Director Kalli Kind told school board members that the cost increase was partly because of the tariffs on steel

By Associated Press

HELENA — Helena school officials have added more contingency funding to finish building three new elementary schools, citing higher costs from a saturated subcontractor market and tariffs on steel.

The Independent Record reports the school board approved $1.75 million in contingency funds Tuesday, adjusting to the higher construction costs than what the district had planned for.

District Facilities Director Kalli Kind told school board members that the cost increase was partly because of the tariffs on steel. The cost of rebar has increased to $1,450 per ton from the $1,100 per ton the district paid three months ago.

Kind says the contingency funding was necessary to keep the three projects on track. The district expects the new schools to open by fall 2019.

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