JAMESTOWN – The James Prendergast Library board of trustees held its first meeting following the ouster of embattled executive director Linda Mielke Thursday afternoon. The meeting began with comment from the public, including local resident Pat Anzideo, who urged the library board to move forward and work toward find a suitable replacement for Mielke and also requested that the board stay focused on correcting any current issues.
- READ FULL STATEMENT FROM ANZIDEO
- READ JAMESTOWN POST-JOURNAL ARTICLE ON MEETING
In addition to Anzideo, three other residents also spoke out, either voicing their concern for the state of the library or urging the board to move forward in looking for a suitable replacement for Mielke. Currently, former assistant director Tina Scott is serving as Acting Director.
The board did not discuss what course of action, if any, would be taken in finding a new director, although it is believed the process would be overseen by the Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Library System board, which will next meet during its annual meeting on Oct. 10 in Olean.
In addition to the public comment, it was also learned that the Library’s fundraising totals are significantly lower this year compared to just a year earlier. Board trustee and treasurer Tom Rankin said the library’s fundraising efforts are down over $38,000 from the previous year and $77,600 under the goal for 2012. Rankin also pointed out the the library will have a new line item in its budget for attorney fees – although he would not give the specific reason for the anticipated legal expenses.
The board also discussed its funding request it will be making to the city of Jamestown. The library is hoping to receive $379,440 from the city in 2013 – up 2 percent from the current year’s total. Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi will announce his budget proposal for 2013 early next month.