Joan Levan appointed trustee Jennifer Mendelson resigned at last night’s Westhampton Free Library’s board meeting.
Past Westhampton Beach Village trustee Charlie Palmer was in attendance and I predict that he will be the next appointed trustee. Pine Barrens Printing owner who prints the Library’s newsletter and Suffolk Cooperative Library System Trustee Mike Lennon was also in attendance. Mr. Lennon served on the WHF Library’s appointed board with Joan Levan in the past as well.
Mr. Palmer served as Village trustee in Mayor Maria Moore’s administration. Mayor Moore’s husband, Tom, was appointed to the Library board on October 30, 2015, by Joan Levan, who also happened to be Mayor Moore’s campaign manager in the spring of 2014 when she was first running for election. Mayor Maria Moore sat on the Library’s appointed board as well, until her resignation in August 2015.
Again, as qualified a candidate as any may be, there should not be board trustee appointments at a taxpayer-funded institution. I submitted a trustee application back in the spring when I learned that appointed trustee Eric Mirrell was resigning. I was told that because I led a campaign to vote down the Library’s budget increase I am deemed ineligible to be appointed to the board. Never mind that it is my right as a taxpayer to vote no to a budget increase. In addition, we were attempting to send the message that we do not believe in appointed boards and the taxpayers should have representation in how their money is spent.
Appointed isn’t American. We encourage any interested WH, WHB and Quiogue resident to submit a trustee application. You can get one at the front circulation desk or on-line. It’s a short 1 1/2 page form that does not take long to complete. We need to show that there are qualified individuals who can serve and the board has no right to undemocratically appoint members to their like-minded private club.