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Mar 13, 2017 6:20 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays Library Postpones $9.9 Million Bond Referendum Vote; Reschedules For April 4

The Hampton Bays Library.
Mar 15, 2017 12:01 PM

The Hampton Bays Public Library’s $9.9 million bond referendum has been rescheduled for Tuesday, April 4, after inaccurate predictions of heavy snowfall prompted the postponement of Tuesday’s vote.

Hampton Bays Library Director Susan LaVista said a decision was made late Monday to postpone Tuesday’s vote and close the library due to the pending snowstorm, though the East End ended up receiving sleet and rain.

Members of the library’s Board of Directors called an emergency meeting on Wednesday morning so they could reschedule the vote as quickly as possible, settling on Tuesday, April 4. Registered district taxpayers can vote in the library’s main program room between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. that day.

In a Tweet issued Monday evening, library officials announced that the Ponquogue Avenue facility would be closed on Tuesday and the bond referendum vote postponed indefinitely: “BOND VOTE POSTPONED due to anticipated storm and accompanying dangerous conditions. A new date will be announced asap.”

The $9.9 million plan calls for the complete gutting and renovation of the 20,000-square-foot single story library, and the purchase of an adjoining half-acre lot at 3 Argonne Road for $390,000 to provide a few dozen additional parking spaces. If approved by taxpayers, the bond—library officials have not yet disclosed if they will borrow the money over 20, 25 or 30 years—would finance the creation of a new floor plan for the renovated building, the finishing of basement space so it can house some library operations, the replacement of the building’s roof, and the installation of a new heating and cooling system, among other upgrades.

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They should postpone indefinitely. Another pet project that can get railroaded through with a low voter turn out. Horrible.
By The Real World (309), southampton on Mar 14, 17 10:22 AM
2 members liked this comment
Is there a legal method to remove the library from the Town of Southampton property tax bill? Let them collect at the door. $50 to $100/month for the average HB house is no longer a legitimate expense.
By dfree (279), hampton bays on Mar 14, 17 11:07 AM
I would love the "pay as you go" for the school too...but that's happening....The Library is Public just like the School. The Town collects the taxes and remits to the Library and School. Good Luck trying to get that changed.
By HB Proud (603), Hampton Bays on Mar 14, 17 1:03 PM
obviously meant "not" happening..don't know how to correct.
By HB Proud (603), Hampton Bays on Mar 14, 17 1:06 PM
1 member liked this comment
Is Susan Lavista or any other board members HB resident?
By GoldenBoy (312), EastEnd on Mar 14, 17 5:23 PM
Most if not all of the Board members are HB Residents (I would think that is a requirement). Susan LaVista was reported not to be.
By HB Proud (603), Hampton Bays on Mar 14, 17 5:25 PM
My parents receive pensions because people in those days could work for a company and retire in that same company; but that kind of job security with pension rewards are (almost) a thing of the past. The next generation will be paying this off and it's not fair for a number of reasons. Because the community already voted against a new library, because they don't need any of the work the board claims they do, and because they're not elected by the community and acting irresponsible and undemocratic. ...more
By sharkbait (30), Hampton Bays on Mar 15, 17 1:04 PM
1 member liked this comment
Heard she resides in westhampton... On HB board, how???
By knitter (763), Southampton on Mar 15, 17 2:59 PM
November 17, 2011
Susan LaVista, the director of the in Bridgehampton, was named this week as the new director of the .

The announcement was made via a press release sent to the media on Wednesday.

LaVista will officially take over for Mike Firestone, who is the , according to the release.

“I am very excited about this opportunity and I look forward to my role as director and working with the board, staff and community to continue to deliver exceptional library ...more
By dfree (279), hampton bays on Mar 15, 17 3:38 PM
Susan LaVista will soon embark on a new chapter in her life.

The Westhampton Beach resident, who is currently the director of the Hampton Library in Bridgehampton, announced last week that she will be resigning from her post to take over as the director of the Hampton Bays Public Library, beginning on March 2.

Hampton Bays Public Library Director Michael Firestone announced his plans late last year to join the Bayport/Blue Point Public Library in Blue Point. Since January, he has ...more
By dfree (279), hampton bays on Mar 15, 17 3:46 PM
This was my Letter to the Editor of the Press. It was printed in January. It still holds true today. In addition, the Westhampton Library president, at the February meeting, actually said that the board is looking for the person with the right "temperament" as well. Six self-appointed individuals alone determine who is deemed worthy to serve alongside them in their private club funded by millions of taxpayer dollars. Only 6 of 19 Suffolk County association libraries still maintain self-appointed ...more
By st (68), westhampton beach on Mar 15, 17 5:17 PM
1 member liked this comment
Thanks for the information, very enlightening. What I don't understand is how an appointed, non-elected board can qualify for grants?
By sharkbait (30), Hampton Bays on Mar 16, 17 1:03 PM
Thank you. I don't know specifically how or which grants the library is permitted to apply for. But there are many grants out there. For example, when my kids were in the WHB elementary school simply as a PTA member I applied for a $1500 Target arts grant and we got it. There are probably grants available for building, expansion, library-only, etc., that are unrelated to whether the board is elected or self-appointed. But, again, I don't know the specifics. I'm just thinking it is possible.
By st (68), westhampton beach on Mar 16, 17 3:04 PM
"Members of the library’s Board of Directors called an emergency meeting on Wednesday morning so they could reschedule the vote as quickly as possible, settling on Tuesday, April 4."

Why the rush? It's an ill thought out plan, very poorly done.
By sharkbait (30), Hampton Bays on Mar 16, 17 12:59 PM
1 member liked this comment
GET OUT AND VOTE - NO, NO, NO,

Let's get these trustees removed after we defeat this nonsense.
By HamptonDad (103), Hampton Bays on Mar 16, 17 11:37 PM
1 member liked this comment
There's nothing wrong with the current library. Who's complaining about it other than the Board?
By newresident (3), Hampton Bays on Mar 17, 17 1:25 PM
2 members liked this comment
Sharkbait: The answer to your question " Why the rush" is that LaVista and the board want to get the vote in before the snowbirds return. That is the only reason. LaVista claims that in order to buy the house behind the library they must act fast due to contract terms. Are you kidding? The owner of that dump will sell at any time for that high price. Don"t believe a word they say.
By P. Revere (37), hampton Bays on Mar 17, 17 3:27 PM
I'm voting NO, because it's a waste of tax payer money.
By sharkbait (30), Hampton Bays on Mar 19, 17 4:21 PM
The same residents who vote "No" on this bond referendum are those who vote "No" on every school budget.

The library is the intellectual heartbeat of the community. Without it, there is no community center and no direction to efforts to provide Hampton Bays' residents with the resources to enlarge the scope of their enjoyment of their lives and to provide them, locally, with the knowledge that will enable them and their children to understand and control the forces that affect their destinies.

Hampton ...more
By highhatsize (3266), East Quogue on Mar 19, 17 5:19 PM
1 member liked this comment
serious "the intellectual heartbeat of the community" - oh boy - no wonder the country is in the shape it is in....please put away your eight-track and vcr.
By HB Proud (603), Hampton Bays on Mar 19, 17 6:02 PM
Vote NO. Grossly overpriced projects like this price working class property owners and, indirectly, Renters out of their homes. The only true pressing need - additional and safer parking, can be more frugally addressed by purchasing the adjoining house for $371K, and significantly enlarging and improving the parking area - all feasible for under $700,000. Coaxing another $9.2MM out of taxpayers, to gut and redo the recently (2003) remodeled library, which is fully ADA compliant, is a travesty.
By Muntiss (2), Hampton Bays on Mar 19, 17 9:00 PM
There's definitely something to be said for a nice, modern library that serves as a showpiece for the Hampton Bays community and serves the residents with a variety of programs. However, paying the current $300/year in property taxes plus another $100 for the new bond for a $500k assessed value house in HB and having the library board commit to a building contractor who ripped off Bridgehampton for millions of dollars seems like a bad idea.
By dfree (279), hampton bays on Mar 20, 17 9:00 AM
Sorry, but I can think of a lot better things to do with $10 million in principal and $10 mill in debt service than another public building. Do we know how many taxpaying households are full time? I have witnessed 6-8 people in the programs and probably some of the same 6-8 people in multiple program. Yes, I feel bad for the 6-8 people, but not $20 million bad.
By HB Proud (603), Hampton Bays on Mar 20, 17 10:05 AM
1 member liked this comment
Excellent comment HB Proud. Ladies and gents lets stop believing and repeating the 9.9 million dollar lie. As HB Proud and myself have stated: THE COST IS 20 MILLION; 10 MILLION principle and 10 MILLION debt service( better known as INTEREST) . The fed has just raised the subprime, therefore the bond interest rate just went up, therefore the debt service will most likely exceed 10 MILLION. Dont put this debt on your children.
By P. Revere (37), hampton Bays on Mar 20, 17 7:50 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By P. Revere (37), hampton Bays on Mar 20, 17 8:01 PM
HB Lions, Over the Bridge 10k Run and 5k run walk, Hampton Bays