The Jefferson-Madison Regional Library sent off outgoing board of trustees President Timothy F. Tolson Monday with cupcakes, two commemorative mugs, a framed poster and a donated book for each of the 10 years Tolson had served as a JMRL trustee.
Incoming President Deborah Willenborg, who will oversee her first meeting next month, thanked Tolson for his service.
“It has been a great pleasure working with you and I wish you the best,” Willenborg said during a small ceremony at the board’s regular meeting.
Under Tolson’s presidency, the long-dormant Crozet Library project was approved, bid on and awarded. Groundbreaking on the project will be today. Before directing the board back to the business of his last meeting, he thanked them for all the work that went into the Crozet Library.
“You have been a great board to work with as president,” he said. “You have been very successful as a board and as an advocacy group, so thank you.”
JMRL also approved its fiscal year 2013 budget Monday by an 8-1 vote. The budget includes nixing Sunday hours at the Northside Library in an effort to make up a budget shortfall. Board member Gary Grant voted against the budget as proposed in part, he said, because it takes into account an out-of-area fee system that has not yet been enacted.
The out-of-area fees are expected to be included in a rewritten regional agreement to run JMRL, but that agreement has not been finalized.
“I don’t like the fact that the county staff has continually said that they want to see out-of-area fees that will probably reduce our budget by around $30,000,” Grant said. “They took that out of our budget even before that program has been approved.”
Grant added that he was not satisfied that Albemarle County negotiated the lease for the building that houses Northside, but is leaving JMRL to pay for a rent increase on the structure.
“They negotiate what I consider is a bad lease, and then they pass that increase on to us year after year without including the money to fund that increase,” Grant said.
JMRL won an award last month as part of Charlottesville’s Better Business Challenge because of eco-improvements at the Central Branch including a new HVAC system, water usage improvements and increased recycling efforts.
“We still have a long way to go, but every little bit helps,” Krista Farrell, assistant library director, said.