Thursday, March 14, 2013

News About the Library

Last night, the Hudson Area Library Board of Trustees held two meetings in succession: their regular monthly meeting at 5:15 and their annual meeting at 6:15. At the beginning of the regular monthly meeting, board president Mark Orton asked the committee chairs be "cryptic" when making their reports. His choice of words was curious. It would have been understandable if he had asked them to be succinct. After all, the meeting had to be over in an hour. But to ask them to be cryptic suggested that were things that the board wanted to keep from the press and the members of the public present. Notwithstanding this admonition, some interesting information was presented about the library's proposed move to the Armory, a.k.a., the Galvan Community Learning Center.

Back in December, when the schematic design for the library was presented to the public, $1 million was mentioned as the library's share of the project. At the board's January meeting, $2.8 million was mentioned as the possible figure. Yesterday, however, with design development underway, the library's share of the project costs was said to be $2 million. Theresa Parsons, co-chair of the Capital Campaign Committee, reported that the funds currently available for the project total about $245,000, which includes the net proceeds from the sale of 400 State Street, "money left over from before," and $38,000 "contributed by individuals in the past few months."

Orton told the board that the Galvan Foundation's commitment to the entire structure was $8 million. This presumably includes the new wing to be constructed on the west side of the building, where a garage is now located, but it was not entirely clear if the $8 million includes the $2 million for which the library is responsible. According Orton, "Galvan is making the commitment before the library raises the money."

During the annual meeting, the board elected a new member, Brian Stickles, and a slate of officers: Mark Orton, president; Mark Young, vice president; Marie Rasner, treasurer; Ginger Benedict, recording secretary. The board also approved the 2013 operating budget which totaled $203,200--$130,800 of which comes from "Local Government Funds" and $120,000 of that comes from the City of Hudson.


  1. How magnanimous of Galvan.

    And the Library Board sold off their own historic building for a pittance to his organization to devote their finances to just running a library.

  2. Vincent - just running a library? That's our job. That's our mission in the communities we serve. What else do you think we should be running?
    And the close to half million dollars Galvan paid for a building we could no longer afford to maintain is not a "pittance." It has made it possible for us to move ahead with exciting plans for a new library, one that better serves the needs of the community and one which Hudson can be proud of.
    To be better informed about the mission of the library and our future plans, I invite you to come to one of our board meetings which are open to the public or, at least, visit our website Theresa Parsons