Jasper Library Board Picks “Volunteer Committee”

17813A nine-member “volunteer” committee is now in place to help the Jasper Public Library Board decide the future of the Jasper Public Library (pictured).

Five members of the community were chosen by the library board from nine applicants who wanted to serve on the committee.

The five selected are Brad Ward, CEO of the Dubois County Community Foundation; Joe Huddleston, an employee at Kimball Office. Bob Dilger, who is retired from the Crane Naval Support Center. Also selected were Karen Grewe, who works for the Jasper Arts Center, and John Bell who is president of the Jasper Redevelopment Commission.

These five will join library board members Mark Kunkel and Pamela Catt along with library director Rita Douthitt and Christine Golden who is the Jasper Library branch manager.

The group will be in charge of exploring options for the embattled Jasper Library. The committee will look into the long-term needs of the library and make recommendations to the board as to whether the current building, with renovations, will meet future needs, or if a new library building will need to be built.  The current building is more than 60 years old.

The first meeting of what is being called a “volunteer committee” will be Tuesday, May 6th at the library’s annex at 11th and Main streets. The library board hopes to have any and all committee recommendations in the next six months. This is so the board has time to prepare, if needed, a referendum for construction costs on the 2015 fall ballot.

A referendum for a new library building on South Newton Street was defeated during the 2011 elections. The referendum revealed a partisan split among the board members at the time.

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