H-SANTA MARIA

May 31, 2013 6:23 PM by Cameron Polom, KSBY News

Santa Maria Bonita School District working with state on siesmic certification

According to the California Department of Architecture, eleven buildings in the Santa Maria Bonita School District don't have structural certification.

That means the state has yet to sign off on the buildings' seismic safety.

School board trustee Will Smith has repeatedly raised concerns about this issue

This week, the state took action, issuing a report about the progress.

"I was looking at the condition of our school buildings and I found out that we did not have the buildings properly certified and this has been around 2007, 2008," said Will Smith.

Santa Maria Bonita School Board member Smith says he approached the district about the lack of structural certification on a number of school buildings

"I was told erroneously that the paperwork for these buildings was in, and it was the Department of State Architects that was holding up the process," said Smith.

However, Smith says he reached out to the state and they told him the paperwork had not yet been filed.

According to an investigation by DSA, structural deficiencies were identified in the buildings but they do not rise to a level of an imminent threat to students or staff.
The report goes on to say the district does need to continue to work with DSA to complete certification.

"We are in the thousands of schools that need to be certified," said District Superintendent Phil Alvarado.

Alvarado says the report is clear, the buildings are safe, and all that's left is paperwork.

"We are in line to have that certification done," said Alvarado, "But if you have 2000 or 3000 ahead of you in that line, you're moving as quickly as you can."

You can read the complete report from the California Department of Education by heading to the Links section of our website.

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