Leechburg residents call meeting to measure support for reopening town’s library | TribLIVE.com
Valley News Dispatch

Leechburg residents call meeting to measure support for reopening town’s library

Chuck Biedka

A June 25 public meeting could mark the start of solutions to bring back the Leechburg public library, meeting co-sponsors hope.

The volunteer library board announced in late May that the 93-year-old public library was closing May 30.

The upcoming meeting is to gauge interest, get ideas and encourage people to reopen the library, according to meeting cosponsor and Leechburg Councilman Chuck Pascal.

The meeting will be held at the Leechburg Fire Hall to ask a host of questions:

• Can the public library get enough volunteers to make the public collection accessible on a better schedule?

• How can a library director/manager be hired?

• What has happened to the books donated to the library in memory of others?

• What do financial records show?

The library has been sharing space in the Leechburg Area School District library ever since the public library began in the 1920s.

Advocates say that has been an advantage and disadvantage.

Public school security needs have recently limited public library access to only after-school hours, Pascal said.

At the same time, Pascal noted that the public library has offered access to computers for students who can’t afford one at home.

Jamie Womer, who once served on the volunteer library board, “There are many reasons to keep the public library open.”

Several people who support reopening the public library noted its abrupt closing.

“One of the biggest things is that a lot of people believe they were blindsided,” said Karen Freilino, meeting co-sponsor and Leechburg resident.

Womer agreed.

“There was no warning,” she said.

Pascal said there the biggest question is: “Can we get people to volunteer to do the various things to get the library reopened?

“Our hope is our community can come together and get some solutions and ways to move forward.”

Chuck Biedka is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chuck at 724-226-4711, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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