I believe there need to be improvements to the libraries, but the vote for the bond issue/tax increase is premature since voters have not been given enough information and facts to adequately judge the proposal.
Two letters in two issues (April 4 and April 11) question the information published by Irondequoit Citizens for Better Government Inc. (ICBG) Both of the letters fail to present facts disproving the information in our ads. The information in our ads are based on library and town records and the law.
A couple of points need to be responded to since they involve major issues of the $13 million bond issue/tax increase. The number of 3,000 more vehicle trips per day at Town Hall is based on the library’s record of over 450,000 visitors to the library in a previous year. At the last library information meeting at Town Hall, library director Buford stated that it can be expected a new library would generate a 20 to 40 percent increase in the number of visitors.
Adding the lower percentage, 20 percent, to the 450,000 results in 540,000 visitors. Over the 300 days the library is open, this would result in 1,800 visitors per day. However, the traffic trips would be double that, since each vehicle would have a trip to and a trip from the library resulting in 3,600 trips per day. Even if you assumed that in some cases there would be two visitors in a car, it still would be upwards of 3,000 trips per day added to an already congested Titus Avenue with only one lane in each direction.
If the library is open 10 hours, that results in an average of 300 trips per hour, not even counting the peak times. There is not enough parking to accommodate 150 cars every hour since many visitors may stay more than one hour. Also the library’s own architectural drawing doesn't show any parking by one architect’s proposal, while the other architect shows only about 50 parking spaces, hardly enough for 150-200 cars.
Impact on the environment before the Town Board voted is required by the library’s own “Thomas Report.” It is also required as per court decision Tri-County Taxpayers Association V. Town of Queensbury and a memo from the legal counsel of the Association of Towns.
It is unfortunate that one writer in a childish manner decided to attack me personally, since that type of language doesn’t lend clarity to a discussion. For ten years ICBG has published over 50 ads on government issues based on facts. We find that it’s a lot easier to communicate when you focus on facts. Several of our statements in the ads were verified during the last library informational meeting.
The vote for the bond issue/tax increase is premature since the voters have not been given enough information and facts to adequately judge the proposal for a new massive library building. Also the statement that the Evans branch (Cooper Road) cannot be enlarged with a second floor without placing large columns inside is false. There is a method we found that allows for a second floor with non-intrusive supports elsewhere on the building that the library has not addressed.
Page 2 of 2 - I believe there need to be improvements to the libraries, but the vote for the bond issue/tax increase is premature since voters have not been given enough information and facts to adequately judge the proposal — especially the option of enlarging and improving the two convenient branches. If voters vote no, perhaps that can viewed that the library should look further to improve/expand our two convenient libraries.
RICHARD J. BARONE
Chairman, Irondequoit Citizens for Better Government Inc.