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Library board may change its makeup, bylaws
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The Hall County Library Board plans to meet June 22 to consider changing its bylaws so board representation by Hall County governments is based on "direct financial support."

The issue surfaced May 11 when Clermont requested the appointment of two residents to the board.

The town, which is fighting Hall County’s decision to place the new North Hall library outside Clermont, has financially aided the current branch in the town limits for about 30 years, City Attorney David Syfan said in a May 5 letter on the issue.

The board batted down the request.

Hall County Library System Director Adrian Mixson, quoting County Attorney Bill Blalock, said Clermont has provided "no cash contribution to the library system," only "agreeing to paying for certain types of services," such as trash and water.

But board members fretted over internal wording that dealt with the issue.

"It seems to me that the problem is not so much whether (Clermont) has a legitimate claim or not, but I don’t know whether it’s legitimate or not based on our constitution, which I think we need to deal with," board member Mike Freeman said.

The board voted to form a committee to review the section of the constitution dealing with board appointments.

Freeman pressed for the vote, saying the aim would be to "clear up any ambiguities that might be there."

In a May 19 report, Killian Edwards, who heads the committee, said the group met with Blalock to discuss possible changes.

The committee is recommending the board "shall be composed of 10 members appointed by the local government agencies providing direct financial support to the library Board of Trustees on an annual basis."

The constitution now says the board "shall be composed of 10 members appointed by the local government agencies financially supporting the library on a regular basis."

"This change should clarify the areas that were a bit vague or unspecific," particularly the phrases "financially supporting" and "on a regular basis," Edwards said in her report.

Blalock told the committee that "local government agencies is usually taken to mean city or county agencies, so that should be fine as it is," Edwards added.

The library board’s meeting is set for 6 p.m. June 22 at the Gainesville branch at 127 Main St.

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