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Marcellus Township Wood Memorial Library

History of the Library - Part 9

Ready, Set, Grow Again: Library Expansion in 2000-2002 By Suzanne Lind
History of the Library - Part 9

A few brief words in succinct library board minutes reveal many hours of careful work and thought, as well as a wide range of expertise among library board members.  The following library board meeting minutes illustrate how much thoughtful planning and hard work was involved in preparing space for the expanding library collection and services. The library was expanded between 2000 and 2002, and its space well used, thanks to the “space use” studies of previous years.


From Marcellus Township Wood Memorial Library Board meeting minutes:

January 6, 2000: “The next item on the Agenda was the Building Addition.  Terry Quinn, Chair of this committee reported that he is looking into zoning restrictions and requirements for public building and fund raising possibilities.”


March 2, 2000: “(Terry) Quinn gave a Building report.  We are seeking sources of funding for the new building addition.  There has been discussion about a slab foundation and a flat roof.  Zoning laws are being looked into.”


April 6, 2000:  “New Building Report: we have land reaching to the power pole in the side yard.  To build a 40’x 40’ building with no plumbing would cost approximately $75,000.00.  We discussed optional ways to fund this project.  A committee will start making plans.”


May 4, 2000:  “The new building committee presented the board with an update.  It was moved by (Susie) Johnson and seconded by (Terry) Quinn that we appear on the August ballot for a renewal of our millage.  Carried.”


May 31, 2000:  “(Terry) Quinn reported on the status of the Building project.  Two local building professionals have been asked to put together specs and give an estimate of cost of construction.”


July 6, 2000: “Building Committee Chairman (Terry) Quinn moved and (Edel) Lonsbery seconded that Township Clerk Ann Webb be contacted to get a 1 Mil for 3 years on the ballot for November so the building addition can be started.  (Kay) Ohlrogge will contact her.”


September 7, 2000: “New addition:  Gary Nofsinger has drawn plans for it and Cal Noell drew plans for the inside.  Contacting an architect was discussed in preparation for getting construction bids.  A flyer was discussed – a fact sheet on what is planned and why.  (Susie) Johnson will work on it.”


October 5, 2000:  (Jim) Murray reported on his conversation with attorney, Ted Tucker:  We do not need to hire an architect for the building addition.  The bidding process is not tied to lowest or highest bid.  We can accept the bid that suits our needs.  We are not required to pay Sales Tax.  Susie Johnson reported that the Flyers advertising the building addition are at the printers.  (Chris) Nofsinger said she has instructions from the Post Office on bundling them for each route and the PO Boxes.  More publicity is needed for the Library Addition Millage on the November ballot.”


The Library Addition Millage was approved by township voters in November 2000.


January 4, 2001:  “Discussed starting plans for the new addition.  Carol (Huff) will contact the bank and Jim (Murray) will contact the attorney.”


February 1, 2000:  “Building Committee report:  (Jim) Murray and (Carol) Huff have begun investigating the requirements to obtain a bank loan secured by the recent millage approval.  (Mike) Holmes and (Terry) Quinn will meet with Mr. Halifax to discuss the building specifications that will be submitted to the architect and that will be used in ads soliciting bids from contractors.”


February 19, 2001: “This special meeting was called to consider the options submitted by the architect, Charles Baber.  The board discussed the four options, ranging in cost from $4500 to $16000.  (Jim) Murray moved to accept the first of the four options, i.e. “permit drawings” at a cost of $4500 to $5200.  (Mike) Holmes seconded the motion.  The motion passed.”


March 1, 2001: “President (Carol) Huff reported on her meeting with Township Supervisor Olsen and their discussion of the requirements to get approval for the loan necessary for the building addition.”


March 29, 2001: “The board was informed that it would be possible to borrow against the first two years of millage and then again borrow against the third year.  Announcement of bids for the construction of the new addition will be made as soon as the architect delivers the plans.”


May 3, 2001: “The board discussed the status of the new addition.  The building inspector indicated that we will need a zoning variance because the proposed addition will be closer to the DDA (Downtown Development Association) building than current zoning provides for.  (Mike) Holmes agreed to discuss the variance with the building inspector and determine what steps are needed to obtain the variance.  (Jim) Murray will continue to monitor the progress of the loan.  Bids will be solicited as soon as the loan is finalized.  After discussion, the board decided to save the ‘time capsule’ that is embedded in the sun dial pedestal and relocate the sun dial after the new addition is completed.”


The sun dial and pedestal were later moved to the south side of the library, and placed beside the big memorial stone and the flag pole.  The time capsule remains embedded in the sun dial pedestal.  A charming verse is carved into the metal plate which holds the sun dial gnomon (the part which casts the shadow on the plate to tell the time).  The verse says, “Let others tell of storms and showers, I’ll only mark your sunny hours.”


June 8, 2001: “The board discussed the status of the proposed addition.  (Mike) Holmes is pursuing the needed zoning variance and does not anticipate any problems.  There was further discussion of the need for gutters on the DDA building and on the back of the library.  The secretary is to prepare the ad for the newspaper soliciting bids and will also directly solicit from local contractors.  No deadline has yet been set.”


July 12, 2001: “New business: (Mike) Holmes indicated that he would attend the zoning commission meeting on Thursday, July 19 to present our request for a zoning variance involving the proposed addition.  Attorney Burke Webb told the board that the Village Planning Commission would meet the same night and he would determine the building requirements involving the new addition.  Holmes indicated that he would try to attend that meeting also.  The addition:  Only one bid was received for the proposed addition to the library.  That bid was from The Woodshaper.  After considerable discussion of the various elements of the bid and the subcontractors’ estimates, Holmes moved and (Terry) Quinn seconded a motion to accept the bid. After further discussion, the motion was amended by a motion from Quinn and a second by (Jim) Murray that the bid be accepted contingent upon a satisfactory resolution of questions regarding the subcontracts involving the electrical work and the masonry work.   Quinn was designated to meet with the contractor to discuss and possibly resolve the questions indicated above.  Carpet for the addition was selected from several samples made available by the subcontractor.”


August 2, 2001:  “Building project: (Jim) Murray reported that after discussion with the lawyer in Lansing, we can be ready to move on the building project once a construction contract is drawn and signed and the township, which holds title to the library property, approves the terms of the loan.  In order to bring the estimate into accordance with the anticipated funds, the board decided to modify the architect’s plan by: 1—not removing the brick from the existing addition; 2—by eliminating the curbing shown on the architect’s drawing; 3—by eliminating the ‘inlays’ currently called for; 4—by eliminating the 19 feet of brick wrap-around on the north side that is currently shown in the drawings.  (Terry) Quinn moved and Murray seconded a motion to accept these modifications in the plan.  Motion carried.  The township has allowed the variance we requested and has indicated that they will donate the land to the north of the proposed addition to the library.  Director Nofsinger indicated that she had discussed the funds donated in memory of Mary Jones and that the family has agreed to the purchase of some fine oak furniture.”


September 6, 2001: “Building is proposed to begin on September 24 pending the expected approval of the loan.”


October 4, 2001: “The problems with the footings in the new addition have been resolved and it is hoped that the framing up can begin as soon as Monday, October 8.  The Township Clerk has reported that we can expect to receive about $48,000 more than anticipated over the next three years.  This is good news and will easily cover the interest costs of the money borrowed for the new addition.  The contractor has indicated that it is too late to make changes on the north side of the new addition.  Some board members had suggested certain changes.  Mrs. Dottie Bent has indicated that the (Order of the) Eastern Stars will donate about $1,600.00 which will allow us to have the fan shape above the new door built to match the existing door’s fan.  The board deeply appreciates this donation.  The Director indicated that it will be necessary to close the library for approximately 10 days to allow construction of the addition.  The Director and Board will begin planning for an open house to celebrate the completion of the new addition.  The Director will be soliciting gifts from area businesses to be given out at the open house.”


December 6, 2001: “The Eastern Stars have donated $1,600.00 for the installation of a fan window to match the existing fans over the large doors.”  (Note:  Readers will remember that the beloved back door on the north side of the original library building, with the brickwork arch and the fan-shaped window above it, was saved and placed into the new north side of the building in 1984.  In 2002 the same door, arch and fan-shaped window were moved to the west side of the expanded building. With the contribution from the Order of Eastern Stars in 2001, the library completed the classical look of its western side with a matching fan-shaped decoration, placed over the front entrance to the library.)  


January 3, 2002:  “Director’s report:  Construction cannot be considered completed until all brickwork is done.  The contractor shared concerns regarding ice build-ups on the 1984 addition of the roof.  He recommended blowing insulation into the old section of the roof to remedy this problem.  The board shared discussion on this matter, but no formal agreement was reached at this time.”


February 7, 2002:  “Director’s report: Insurance coverage is in place for new addition effective January 16, 2002.  Ice buildup from the ice storm in January damaged the new air conditioner.  Gary Roberts assessed the replacement at approximately $950.00.  We are waiting to hear from the insurance company for replacement.  The director recommends the installation of a protective cover for the air conditioning unit.  (Jennifer) Kindt motioned to build this covering, and a second by (Kay) Ohlrogge approved the motion.  Terry Roberts brought in an application for a grant from the Downtown Development Association for landscaping funds.  It was noted that the sign needs repainting, and suggested that a request for this will be included in the DDA grant.  There was a motion forwarded by (Terry) Quinn to accept the final bill from the Woodshaper, which includes additional costs of $989.46, with a second by (Carol) Huff.”


March 7, 2002:  “The Open House will take place April 21, 2002 from 2-4 p.m.  Roxie Ewert is requesting to perform for this.  Murray motioned that the library commit to spend a total of $500 for the open house, with a second by (Jennifer)  Kindt.”


For the past 16 years the Marcellus Library has been housed in its 3-part building, one part flowing into another, with open spaces that are flexible for changing programs, displays, additional books and more technological services.  The Marcellus Library Board and many other community people have supported the library well and have devoted energy and interest to its growth and creativity.