Village trustees agreed to outsource Oak Park’s crossing guards on Monday in a move that officials estimate will save taxpayers about $140,000 during the upcoming school year.

The board voted 4-0 Monday to approve a contract with Aurora-based Andy Frain Services, which will provide one supervisor and 23 crossing guards at intersections near public elementary schools.

No current crossing guards were present at the meeting. But before the decision, Carol Sims – the union representative for the crossing guards – urged trustees to vote against farming out the work. She cautioned that Oak Park would lose control of the service if it was handed off to someone else.

“It hasn’t been a big turnover position, and so there is a commitment to the community and to the children,” she said in an interview before the meeting. “Anytime you remove your control over something for a service, you can’t help but lose something in the process.”

But trustees were compelled enough by the cost savings and unanimously approved the contract with Andy Frain, with three board members absent. Guards will earn about $17.98 an hour, working two hours a day – morning and afternoon – for 180 school days.

Frank Spataro, director of human resources for Oak Park, said he has asked Andy Frain to consider hiring the village’s current crossing guards to fill positions around town.

Officials estimate that Oak Park will save another $20,000 because it will no longer have to pay its crossing guards unemployment over the summer while school is out. The village will save another $25,000 a year that it was spending on crossing guard supplies.

Trustees also finalized an agreement Monday that will have District 97 pay up to $168,000 in costs for crossing guards, with the service still overseen by village hall. Andy Frain’s contract for policing District 97 intersections will cost about $156,000, so the extra amount will be reimbursed to the school district, according to the agreement.

Oak Park is also working on an arrangement with three local private elementary schools -Ascension, St. Giles and St. Edmund – that would have the schools cover seven crossing guards at a cost of $46,118. Officials said that private schools could also provide volunteers at intersections if they preferred not to pay for Andy Frain guards.

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