Zionsville Times Sentinel

Local News

October 5, 2011

Zionsville library board changes

No legal recourse exists for the Boone County Council to challenge a change in  the Zionsville library’s board of directors.

Some council members had questioned the Hussey-Mayfield Memorial Public Library’s decision to replace one of the council’s appointees after being told by the Indiana Library Board the change was required.

Councilman Gene Thompson had asked county attorney Bob Clutter to determine whether the council still had a valid representative on the board.

Research determined the answer was yes, Clutter told the county council at its September meeting.

“I’m comfortable relying on the position of the state library board,” Clutter said; that agency has “statutory,” or legal, authority over the Hussey-Mayfield board, Clutter said.

Hussey-Mayfield director Jake Speers told the county council a state library board audit uncovered the issue.

“I apologize for the confusion this has caused,” Speer said. The state told the library the board’s “composition needed to be changed immediately,” he said.

One of Thompson’s concerns involved funding. Hussey-Mayfield, the Thorntown Public Library and the Lebanon Public Library receive nearly two-thirds of their revenue from the county’s local option income tax and from excise taxes.

A reorganization that combined Eagle and Union townships with Zionsville gave Hussey-Mayfield the authority to change the board’s make-up, Clutter said.

Before then, the county council and Boone County commissioners each had two appointments to the seven-member board and three others were named by Zionsville Community Schools.

With the reorganization, the commissioners and council lost an appointment, and the Zionsville Town Council gained two, one of whom must be the town council president.

The board now consists of LeeAnn Biggs, the town council president; Jeff Rolland, the town board’s other appointee; school board appointments Josh Minkler, Monty Korte and Bea Edwards; commissioner appointee Sandra Cha Sifferlen; and county council appointee Gayle J. Cox.

The changes were made at the library board’s July meeting, according to the board’s minutes.

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