ITEM 119-109-R0503                                                          May 29-30, 2003

 

Student Assistance Foundation of Montana

Facility Space Issues

November 25, 2002

 

Background:

With the growth that SAF is experiencing SAF is facing some short term and long term issues regarding the space it has to house its employees. The current design of the building presents some opportunities for future expansion as well as some problematic issues in the short and long run. Over the last year SAF has increased its staff from approximately 73 Full Time Employees to approximately 94 Full Time Employees which equates to a 29% increase in Full Time Employees. In addition, SAF has hired up to as many as 6 to 8 temporary employees to cover workload increases.

 

MGSLP Expanding

At the same time, the Montana Guaranteed Student Loan Program has also increased in their FTE from approximately 42 to 46 full time employees. These factors are having an impact on the current facility as it is designed along with working relationships among various units in SAF.

 

Funding Availability

For Fiscal Year 2002-2003, SAFs budget included funding for 25-40 new workstations to be placed in the lower level of the building. SAF has developed a couple of solutions utilizing the funds available to cover some of the short term issues. Funding in the base budget included 25 new work stations at $3,500 a piece or $87,500. The growth scenario included 40 new workstations at $3,500 a piece for an additional 15 work stations or $52,500 for a cumulative workstation total of $140,000. In addition, $10,000 was established for some minor renovation of the receptionist, coffee bar, break room, $50,000 to install both mens and womens restrooms in the basement along with another $100,000 to cover the costs of electrical, mechanical and other structural needs. The total baseline dollars available are $147,500 and the growth budget would increase that amount to $300,000.

 

Short Term Issues

      Is SAF utilizing all of its space within the current building efficiently and effectively?

      Are interruptions to workflow and communications within SAF causing inefficiencies?

      Is the utilization of the space in the basement level the best solution?

      Is renovating existing space and correcting some building deficiencies a better alternative?

      How will SAF deal with the shortage of parking space?

      Is operating two (2) shifts (7:00 am 4:30 pm) and (3:00 pm 11:00 pm) an option?

      Is the building compliant with building code regulations regarding ADA, Restrooms, etc.?

      How can SAF best utilize the resources currently budgeted to address such issues?

 

Long Term Issues:

      How will SAF satisfy its space needs in the long-term?

      Are MGSLP and OCHE interested in space in the building beyond 2014?

      Would St. Peters be willing to sell their vacant property next to SAFs current site?

      How is parking dealt with on a long term basis?

      Would other parties be interested in acquiring the existing building?

      Is building a new facility in a different location within the Helena area feasible?

 

Actions Undertaken:

      Operations Director and Facility Manager have met with Karhu Cullen Architects P.C.

      Building plans will be scanned and entered into a Computer Aided Design software package.

      Karhu Cullen Architects will provide some potential solutions that address the short term issues by mid December 2002.