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K.G. supervisors balk at library costs page 2
King George supervisors balk at notion of spending almost $800 per chair, and other expenses, as part of addition to Smoot Library

 Crowded conditions caused King George to expand its library; now supervisors are questioning some costs.
FILE/THE FREE LANCE-STAR
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Date published: 10/4/2012

continued

As for the children's task seating that Brabo asked about, Tenney couldn't explain its high cost on Tuesday. She told The Free Lance-Star on Wednesday that it's a bench that a child and parent can at while using a computer.

On Tuesday night, Tenney listed items such as cable installation, switches, software and other systems that accounted for the cost overrun.

Brooks wondered why a new phone system was on the list.

Tenney said the library never had a phone system, per se.

Brooks asked what they used in the past: "Walkie-talkies?"

"We basically opened the back door and shouted," Tenney said, adding that the "phone system" consisted of two lines.

Sisson asked Tenney to explain a $110,195 system called RFID, a Radio Frequency IDentification system that reduces the manpower spent checking out books and taking inventory.

She said the new technology would allow her to transfer one person from the circulation desk to the reference area, which is unmanned.

"That's what I was getting at, that the RFID pays for itself," Sisson said.

LoBuglio suggested the library phase in its computers over two or three years, so they don't need replacing at the same time.

Chairman Brooks told her that's often the Board of Supervisors' approach. "We tell the school system: Scrub it and come back."

That remark prompted Sisson to bring up the library topic later in the meeting, when the board was in the middle of a motion to reappoint Josh Colwell to the Planning Commission.

Sisson said he was afraid the library discussion was left "too open-ended." He said the county was comparing the library to schools, when the library had a much smaller staff.

And, if the library is going to be treated like a county department, it should get county resources, such as guidance from the procurement department in making purchases, Sisson said.

Others agreed. Tenney will work to lower costs and bring back another presentation to the board.

The supervisors also scheduled tours of library facilities on Oct. 16. The tour will start at 4 p.m. at the old King George Middle School, where the library is operating while the construction is under way. Then the tour will move to the Smoot Library, on State Route 3 next to county offices.

Cathy Dyson: 540/374-5425
Email: cdyson@freelancestar.com


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