End of a school property project

Boards of trustees have a governance role in project management. At the end of the project, you will be responsible for closing the project file, discharging the project manager and returning any unspent project funds to the Ministry.

Role of the project manager

Find out more about the role of the project manager.

Role of the project manager in school property projects

Checking your project manager has completed the Building Update Form

Check that your project manager has completed the Building Update Form at the end of the project. We use this form to update physical records and project items within K2 in preparation for capitalisation.

If K2 isn't updated, you won’t get the appropriate Property Maintenance Grant (PMG) funding, which is calculated based on the school’s buildings area.

Property Maintenance Grant (PMG) funding

Accounting for project funds

In your accounting system, you must separately account for money you receive for property projects. Treat these funds as income. You hold the money on the Ministry’s behalf until you spend it.

To meet accounting requirements, you must:

  • credit funds to a liability account when received
  • keep a separate account for each capital works project — for financial management and control
  • include a disclosure note, in the financial statements, on the amounts received and spent during the year for each project — you must do this even if there's no year-end liability.

Find out more about school accounting.

Financial Information for Schools Handbook

Returning unspent funds to the Ministry

Any unspent 5 Year Agreement (5YA) project funding will be available to you to use on other 5YA projects.

5 Year Agreement (5YA) project funding

For all other Ministry-funded projects that come in under budget, you must return the savings to us. In this way, K2 has an accurate record of the actual project cost.

Closing the project file

At the end of the project, you'll close the project file. You must:

  • include all the final paperwork in the project file
  • store the file securely — you'll need the guarantees it contains if a building defect becomes apparent
  • keep the project file for the life of the building
  • keep all procurement process records, including unsuccessful tenders, for 7 years under the Public Records Act 2005.

Public Records Act 2005 — NZ Legislation website (external link)

Discharging the project manager and disestablishing the project control group

Your project manager will close the project. This includes:

  • doing a final inspection and post-occupancy evaluation
  • sending documentation to the Ministry
  • getting local council sign-off.

Your final task will be to discharge your project manager and disestablish the project control group.

Review the project manager’s performance and discuss any non-performance issues. If the project manager has a long-term contract with you, their performance will help you decide whether to continue the contract or not.

Meeting maintenance requirements for the building

Typically, a product manufacturer guarantees its product will perform in a certain way for a set time. For example, a roofing manufacturer may guarantee that the roofing will be leak-free for 10 years. A warranty is the same thing as a guarantee.

Many guarantees are only valid if you maintain the building product in a certain way. For example, you may need to arrange for:

  • annual cleaning of exterior cladding to prevent damage from moss and mould
  • a qualified technician to carry out an annual inspection and maintenance of a heating system.

The project manager collects all the guarantee and maintenance care documents from the contractors and building suppliers for the school. You must include maintenance requirements for building products in the school maintenance programme.

Fixing defects found after the end of your project

If anyone finds defects after the project has been completed, check your maintenance programme. If the defect results from a lack of or inappropriate maintenance, you must pay for repairs from your Property Maintenance Grant (PMG)

Property Maintenance Grant (PMG)

If you believe the defects are caused by faulty products, workmanship or design, you must seek recovery from the designer and/or contractor.

Minor defects

For a relatively minor defect, such as a crack in the plaster coating on exterior cladding, you may simply ask the contractor to fix it. In this case:

  • check the contract to see who is responsible for the repairs
  • write to the contractor outlining the issue and requesting a meeting to discuss it.

Complex problems or issues that cannot be resolved directly

You may need to follow through with the dispute steps in the contract if:

  • the contractor doesn't respond to your attempts at contact
  • the issue can't be resolved
  • the problem is complex.

Funding when you can’t get remediation

You may be unable to get remediation. For example, this may be because:

  • the contractor refuses to pay, but
  • you can't justify the need for third-party intervention or court action.

In these situations, the school representative can discuss with the Ministry how to fund the remediation work. You must use the procurement and project management process for the remedial work.

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