Letter to the editor – Tower Watch draws response from district official

March 30, 2017 1:52 PM

I am writing to let you and your editorial staff know that the District and College Administration are working very hard to fix and maintain the utilities infrastructures at Laney on a daily basis.
I have assigned the Assistant Chief Engineer at Laney College (Jason Busby) to fix the restroom that was featured in your Tower Watch, and also paint over the bathroom that has graffiti also in building E.
The bathroom sink that was featured was fixed March 20 (according to Jason), while the pull stations throughout Laney are being fixed and tested and should be complete by March 24.
We have also assigned an apprentice engineer to paint over future graffiti’s on an on-going basis throughout Laney campus, if the custodians cannot easily clean the impacted area.
I must also let you know that last summer, staff at Laney College painted and revitalized most of the 84 bathrooms throughout Laney College.
There has being continued destruction of bathrooms due to intentional vandalism that is largely blamed or attributed on the homeless population with the college as this is an urban college with attendant challenges on our environment spilling into our facilities.
While this may be over emphasized and may constitute unfair generalization to our homeless population, you can use your good journalism to educate the generality of the public not to destroy the bathroom fixtures, but take ownership of them as this is their college too.
Nevertheless, we have an obligation to our students that pay to get an education in our educational institution to maintain the infrastructures needed for an enviable environment.
Be assured that we are on top of on–going facilities and infrastructures issues every day, while planning for strategic implementation to deal with the leaks, HVAC, Library issues with indoor quality of air, ADA doors, Chemistry Department water faucets, elevator projects for the Tower and Building E, repairs of ovens at the Bistro Kitchen, etc. just to mention a few.
The Administration has also hired Stephen Daniels from Kitchel Management Company that is housed in the Tower building, who is working directly with stakeholders every day to manage the utilities challenges.
We are focusing on giving attention to all the infrastructures at Laney so that we can provide an environment that is conducive for teaching and learning.
Thank you for your journalistic work at Laney.

Sadiq Iharo is Peralta vice chancellor of general services. Email him at sikharo(at)peralta.edu.

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