Sunday, February 28, 2010

Updates and earthquakes

This definitely goes down in the books as the most difficult, challenging business trip I've ever been on. My plane was 90 minutes away from Santiago, Chile in the wee hours of Saturday morning when the pilot alerted us we were being diverted back to Lima, Peru due to an earthquake in Chile. After landing in Lima and learning the details of the tragedy, many of us breathed a sigh of relief that we had not landed in Santiago prior to the earthquake. The other passengers were upset and concerned over their families and loved ones who live in Chile. For their sakes, I hope everyone they knew is safe.

The next 24 hours was a little bit of Hell that I like to call "Escape from Lima". After spending 4 hours in a holding area awaiting some sort of update which would never come, we were sent to baggage claim to find our luggage. Yeah, good luck on that one. After four hours of sifting through bags from multiple flights jammed on the carousel, our bags never appeared. It took another hour for workers to figure out that our bags had been pulled earlier and put into a closet for no apparent reason. With our meeting in Santiago now cancelled, all efforts were spent on getting home. Many hours were required to find an available flight, and local customs and security people at Lima airport aren't exactly the friendliest or most competent. Long story short, we boarded a plane for home around midnight on Saturday. I'll be arriving home shortly, and will grab a shower and breakfast before catching up on my good old friend . . . sleep!

Now onto something a little more relevant to you. The School Board just released two more outsourcing bid results for Grounds Keeping and Food Services. As you might expect, there is still some substantial savings opportunities should the Board outsource Grounds Keeping, about $1.5 million over 5 years. And while Food Services is cost neutral for the district, one vendor guaranteed the District $55k in annual revenue which could be used for other District operational expenses.

You can see the details of both bid tabulations by going to
the School Board's Negotiation website.

It's great to be home!


Levittowner said...

wow..sorry to hear about your travel nightmare. I too hope everyone's family was ok in Chile.
I always wondered about the "cost neutral" cafeteria. My kids never even bought lunch as they frequently ran out of everything but fries.

csld said...

Levittowner would you be so kind to explain your comment about the cafeteria running out of food and they being cost neutral,what does one have to do with the other.

Levittowner said...

I don't know the ins and outs of running a cafeteria, especially when there are mandates that must be followed.
To me it *could* be a sign things could be run better if cost neutral results in food shortages. Perhpas cost neutral is actually too much of a cost...maybe it should be able to be run at a profit. Then again, maybe not.
However, seems worth looking at how the non-union company expects give us a profit.

csld said...

I can tell you first hand that cost neutral has nothing to do with running out of food .First of all the cafeterias never run out of food yes they maybe short when it comes to the main day's entree but there are always subsitutes.Believe me it is very hard to predict how many of the 300 to 1000 kids that you feed everyday to know if they will have the main entree or the everyday offerings.I dont know how you think food service will run better the only different will be is that the lunches will be more money and the workers will be making alot less of a salary.The non union company is not giving you a profit they giving the district 55,000 a year to come in and run the service.