In the wake of massive school closings and budget woes, Chicago Public Schools is seeking to double its furniture budget to $9.5 million, chalking up $5 million of that to an upcoming move of its central headquarters.
District officials want the Board of Education to approve the expense for the purchase and installation of new office furniture by Staples at Wednesday’s monthly meeting, a proposal the Chicago Teachers Union called “poor stewardship of money.”
CPS spokesman Joel Hood said the $5 million added to an existing $4.5 million contract with Staples was part of the moving plan. He said the money would cover costs for the new central headquarters at 1 N. Dearborn and eight satellite district offices. Hood said the district’s old furniture won’t fit in the new streamlined office space and called the cost of disassembling, moving and reassembling it “expensive.”
“This is part of CPS’ overall strategy to restructure and streamline its central office,” Hood said in an emailed statement. “By moving to a smaller, more efficient central office in the fall, the district projects to save an additional $60 million over the next 15 years.”
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