I've spent a majority of my career working in the "real world" where you go on a call, diagnose the problem, explain to the customer the problem, quote the customer an estimate for repairs and, if the customer approves, complete the repairs, collect the check and move on to the next call.

Since last September, I've been employed by a local school district with the specific task of maintaining and repairing kitchen equipment in two elementary schools, one junior high school and one high school. Prior to my hiring, there was no one specific kitchen equipment person and the funds for repairing/replacing equipment was taken out of the general maintenance fund. Since my hiring as the kitchen equipment technician, the budget for kitchen equipment preventative maintenance/repair/replacement falls under the Child Nutrition Department, which is a totally separate department from the Maintenance Department. A vast majority of the monies budgeted for the Child Nutrition Department goes for buying food and paying staff salaries.

Anyway, to make a long story longer, my budget for just equipment maintenance and repair was set at $5,000 for the fiscal year. The day I started, I was handed a stack of work orders. Some of the work orders had gone back almost two years. Needless to say, I had my hands full when I started the job. During the first two months, I blew through the $5,000 to take care of that stack of work orders and to take care of other things that needed attention. Since then, I've had to literally beg my boss for money to take care of other issues that have come up over these past six months. Fortunately, my boss has been able to borrow funds from other budgeted categories so I could order the parts I needed to keep the equipment operating.

Here's the deal. A couple of months ago I audited all the kitchen equipment in the kitchens and came up with close to $1,000,000 in equipment. And, that's just for equipment valued at over $5,000. A majority of the equipment is over ten years old, so issues with the equipment are becoming more frequent.

Based on this information, what would you estimate should be a reasonable repair budget per year for equipment repairs and preventative maintenance?