The Westhampton Free Library Board of Appointed Trustees Meeting is this Wednesday, March 15, at 7 pm in the library.
There is still a vacant trustee seat at our multi-million dollar taxpayer-funded library. At the 12/14/16 board meeting the six self-appointed trustees determined that none of the three library taxpayers who submitted trustee applications meet the esoteric needs of the board at this time. At the 2/15/17 meeting the appointed library president stated that they’re looking for someone with the right “temperament” to fill the vacancy.
Imagine if our school, village or fire board decided that three eligible and willing taxpaying American citizens weren’t allowed to run for or hold office simply because they said so. If taxpayers didn’t like that ruling there’s no means to vote anyone off the board. They can do whatever they want. There are no elections.
Each appointed board member is free to run for election. The elections can be phased in, one or two trustees per year to allow for board continuity, as some of the 17 of 24 Long Island association libraries with elected boards have done.
Until this library board is an elected entity and not a private closed club we will vote NO to annual library budget increases and we encourage other Westhampton voters to do the same.
Employees should still receive wage increases and union employees should be compensated fairly and objectively in line with other LI libraries. The Library has over $4 million cash sitting in the bank and can weather the $161,409 increase being voted down (increase from last year’s budget shown in draft budget given at February’s board meeting).
Voting down the library budget will send a message that we want an elected board of trustees. We want representation with our taxation.