The Westhampton Free Library now has Trustee Applications available on the website and at the circulation desk in the Library.
As it stands, the present four trustees will review these applications and will appoint one trustee? Three trustees? The Library’s Charter Amendment, available on the Library’s website, allows for up to seven trustees and now we only have four trustees sitting on the Board.
Because this is not an open and transparent election process we taxpayers have no idea who is applying, what their credentials are, what their platform is, or what they believe in and value in our community library. We have no idea if one, two, or three trustees plan to be appointed.
Since August 12, 2015, many have been saying that trustees should be elected, not selected. The only thing we taxpayers have control over is our vote for the Library’s budget. Unless the model of governance is changed, many may vote NO in the May election.
This topic of voting NO for the budget was addressed at the December 16, 2015, Board Meeting during the Period for Public Expression. The Board said that voting NO “would only hurt the employees here at the library.” Really? Why is that? The Library employees are the heart and soul of our Library. The employees should be considered first at budget planning time.
In addition, we have money to renovate the attic space and re-work our five year old building, probably adding services and labor to the bigger space, increasing operation costs, but a budget vote of NO will adversely effect the employees of the Library?
Let us carefully consider our budget vote in May.