Town, libary to meet Monday on proposed complex

| 21 Feb 2012 | 10:58

    MONROE-A joint meeting of the Monroe Town Board and the Monroe Free Library Board of Trustees is scheduled for Monday, April 11, to finalize plans and designs for the proposed building complex off Route 208. Library Director Marilyn McIntosh remains optimistic. "We are hoping for a public vote on June 21," she said earlier this week. The meeting, which is open to the public, will be held at the Library, starting at 8:30 p.m. The proposal calls for a 46,000-square-foot building. The library would occupy 70 percent while the town would utilize the remaining 30 percent. Town Supervisor Sandy Leonard acknowledges the critical need for additional space for Town Hall. At last Monday's Town Board meeting, Leonard noted that among other deficiencies, she must share an office, the Town Attorney and Town Engineer do not have offices, the Town Clerk's office is in a space intended for one person but is utilized by three and there is very little space for the public to conduct business. It also is difficult, if not impossible, she added, to hold a private conversation. However, Leonard has voiced opposition to the plan for this complex, citing the $12.8 million cost to taxpayers. An affordable alternative would be the M&T Bank building on Lake Street, she said. "We would move certain functions of the town and leave some in the existing building," she said. The voters will ultimately decide the issue. Originally scheduled for March 16, the vote was postponed while the State Historical Preservation Office examined the site. The state found the property "…is of no archeological significance." The public will be asked to approve a 20-year bond for the cost of the building. If the joint meeting on April 11 produces satisfactory results, the Town Board could approve a resolution for the public referendum at it's March 18 meeting and that public vote could then take place in the later part of June. Should voters reject the bond proposal, the library board would then be forced to reconsider other properties that had previously been rejected as being too expensive or not suitable. "One way or another this community is going to have a new library," McIntosh said.