Thursday, March 12, 2009

More Warren Library News

In one PPH report this morning, former Warren Memorial Library directors Wendy Hysko and Anastasia Weigle blame the Warren Memorial Foundation board's means of renovating the library--not the stock market--for the decision to close the library:

But two former library directors say decisions on
Main Street, not mistakes on Wall Street, sealed the library's fate. Earlier
this decade, they said, the board drained much of the investment fund that
covers library operating costs to pay for building renovations, limiting the
foundation's ability to keep the library running. Tax records from the nonprofit
foundation support their claims. "They overspent on the renovation. That's where
the problem, in my understanding, began," said Wendy Hysko of Freeport, who
resigned last month as director of the library.
The article also contains the foundation's defense of the renovation:

[Foundation treasurer Caren-Marie Michel] said
board members "were in no way putting the fund at risk" with the
multimillion-dollar renovation.


Michel said the building was "crumbling" and,
contrary to Weigle's assertion, had more than leakage problems before the
renovation. "We were faced with a crumbling structure due to water damage and
(Americans with Disabilities Act) issues," she said. "There was no elevator to
the second floor. The space was inadequate."

And in another PPH article, Westbrook resident Kelly Watters's efforts to save the library are noted:

When [Kelly Watters] saw the same library that helped keep her
out of trouble as a child was in trouble itself slated for closure this
spring--she organized the Facebook group "Save the Warren Memorial Library!" The
online organization had more than 330 members by Wednesday. Watters is calling
for the Warren Memorial board to either launch a fundraising drive to help keep
the library open--or resign and let someone else do the job.
(Update: The AJ also has an article about the WML affair.)

- John C.L. Morgan

Related: Westbrook Woman: Save Warren Memorial Library! (March 10, 2009)
Related: Warren Memorial Library Closes (March 6, 2009)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you're on top of this John. As a former employee of Walker Memorial Library I'm very concerned about the consideration of the City to buy Warren Library.

-Jared Blake