Though we taxpayers hoped for a mature, open public discussion about elected vs. appointed boards at the April meeting, the Board of Trustees of the Westhampton Free Library instead presented a rebuke of the right to vote that was stunning in its scope and magnitude.
Trustee Barbara Matros quickly read the 2 1/2 page Executive Summary, then a copy was provided to attendees. Attendees also received a copy of a 14 page Report on Selection of Trustees, and a 96 page evidential backup document was referenced that a taxpayer can obtain a copy of for $24.00.
There is a lot to digest and to consider, and we plan to do that these next few days, but know that nearly every item presented by the Board in an attempt to disenfranchise the taxpaying library patrons can be rebutted.
By obfuscation, the Board of Trustees dismissed the main issue of the taxpayers right to vote. There are many successful association libraries that have elected boards, some with unions like we have in our library. It can be done. This Board simply chooses not to follow that route.
The link from the NYS Department of Education explaining how an association library can retain its “private” status yet have an elected Board of Trustees: