Huntsville City Schools making, saving money through property management

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Within the Huntsville City School system, there is a division known as Property Asset Management (PAM).

While PAM may not be well-known outside the system, it's gaining quite a reputation within the district.

Division employees are responsible for managing 225,000 items of school system property, valued at around $81 million.

But the job doesn't stop there.

In 2012, PAM began a new approach to dealing with surplus property.

No longer would schools simply dispose of old, unwanted items.

Everything goes to one central location, where it's cataloged and offered to other system employees for use on the job.

One teacher no longer needs her desk? It may be just right for another teacher. As a bonus, the school system saves the cost of having to purchase a new desk.

Gesturing to one of several rooms where surplus items are stored, PAM Coordinator Lontrell Harris says, "we've cleared this room maybe 18 times this year. It'll fill up. All the items are gone. We'll bring new items in and it just keeps going."

Items are kept for three to four months. Those that aren't selected for re-use are sold at monthly auctions on

From 2012 to 2014, Harris estimates this approach contributed more than $1.5 million to the school system.

Most of that came from savings through the re-use of surplus property.  More than $200,000 came from the online auctions.

The May auction just opened at

If you'd like to see the items in person before bidding, the public is invited to stop by the PAM offices at 2800 Drake Avenue SW, Monday-Friday from 8am to 4pm. No appointment is necessary.

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