Library's Expansion | Newspaper Articles
Council balks at library loan $1.3M sought to finish project
Mary Jo Hill, Telegram & Gazette, September 29, 2006
LEOMINSTER— City councilors repeatedly pressed Mayor
Dean J. Mazzarella last night about finding other ways than
borrowing to come up with $1.3 million needed to complete an
expansion of the city library.
During last night’s special meeting of the City Council,
Councilor Robert A. Salvatelli said if the mayor comes up
with the money in a different way he would support it.
Mr. Mazzarella said he could walk out of the council
chambers a hero if he said there were other ways to fund the
shortfall in the project. But that would not be responsible,
Mr. Mazzarella emphasized that he would do everything he
could to minimize borrowing but said it was too early in the
fiscal year to make promises about pulling money from other
The council was considering a request by Mr. Mazzarella to
appropriate the $1.3 million and to authorize borrowing the
money. The money is needed to cover costs related to ledge
found in the construction area, the unexpected discovery of
asbestos and work needed to divert groundwater.
The council had not voted on the mayor’s request by late
Two members of the council’s Finance Committee said they
would support the mayor’s request for an authorization,
although the backing was not enthusiastic.
Councilor John M. Dombrowski said aside from people who are
connected to the library or who frequent it, he has not
spoken to a single person in favor of granting the petition.
But, Mr. Dombrowski said, “I think it’s irresponsible in the
long run to vote against this despite what the people and
the public have said.”
He said he is encouraged by the mayor’s pledge to minimize
borrowing for the $1.3 million.
Councilor Wayne A. Nickel said that despite discussion from
the mayor that the project would stop without the
authorization, he does not believe that anybody would allow
that to happen.
But he recommended that the council go along with the loan
authorization because he does not believe that the full
amount will end up being borrowed. Once the city’s “free
cash” amount, or unexpended funds available from previous
budgets, has been certified by the state, Mr. Nickel said,
he believes a portion of the money will come from that fund.
Councilor Dennis A. Rosa took a minority point of view on
the committee, recommending to deny the authorization.
Mr. Rosa said he believes a majority of residents would be
willing to pull money from the stabilization fund, but that
was not the proposal before the council.
Being left with only one choice, Mr. Rosa said he has to
live up to his promises. He said he believes the majority of
taxpayers are saying no to raising their taxes