Monday, November 17, 2008

SHOULD CYBERMOBILE PROVIDE LIBRARY SERVICES DURING THE NEXT MONTH?

Greenburgh's cybermobile (library on wheels with internet access) has not been in service for months. The cybermobile is parked outside Greenburgh Town Hall. No books, no gas, no driver, no librarian.
After the library at Town Hall closed down today (because they are moving to the new expanded library in mid December) a suggestion was made by Hal Samis in one of the blog posts to reactivate the cybermobile. Librarians who are on staff could be assigned to the cybermobile. A schedule could be announced and the cybermobile could continue offering Greenburgh residents library services until the new library opens up. Perhaps, the cybermobile could continue providing services to residents even after the new library opens up. Some people might even want to rent the cybermobile for parties and events. Advertising could help pay for the mobile library too.
In your opinion, should the cybermobile be reactivated? Or--should the cybermobile be sold? What do you think?
E mail townboard@greenburghny.com. We will share your thoughts with the Library Board which is the decision maker re: future of the cybermobile

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

sell it!!!
get rid of it!!

IT WAS A COSTLY MISTAKE THAT CAME TO BE ONLY BECAUSE YOU REQUIRED YOUR DEPARTMENT HEADS TO COME UP ANNUALLY WITH "GOALS" WHICH BECAME YOUR GOALS, & EACH & EVERY ONE OF THE GOALS CAME WITH AN INCREASED COST-

CUT YOUR LOSSES!!!

Anonymous said...

The library has enough money to run it for a few months.

Who's kidding who.

You just gave them $400,000.00 because that dame demanded that they needed the money to furnish chairs and so many things that were already included in the main budget just for the library.
They lied so we the taxpayers got screwed once again.

cybermobile talk is a distraction said...

The current library board is certainly not going to be interested in funding the cybermobile between now and mid-December because the board has made clear that every penny it has received will be used to get the new library facility up and running, which is its prerogative.

The library board that Feiner appointed (and presumably controls, for better or worse) will get to decide come Jan. 1, 2009 whether to spend any of its 2009 money on the cybermobile.

Having seen the library get screwed financially every which way to Sunday, and having seen Feiner appoint people who are clearly not qualified to serve on its board, this is not a library my family will likely ever visit. And it certainly won't be a library we'll be contributing to financially, except through our taxes.

Feiner and his crowd have killed it for us.

So why are we talking about the cybermobile at all? Because it takes attention away from a disaster of a town budget which, when the facts come out about what Greenburgh taxpayers are paying for (wholly apart from the library), will prove to be one of the biggest embarrassments in all of Westchester.

Anonymous said...

Town services are good. Town services will continue to be good. I'm happy.

town services to get much worse said...

Town services will continue to be good? Not according to Chief Kapica. He says that if the town board adopts Feiner's proposed budget, the safety and security of unincorporated area residents will be at risk.

He says we'll have fewer cops than we had four years ago, when Feiner himself argued that Greenburgh's ratio of cops to the population was one of the lowest in the county, and was about to get worse because of new developments that had been approved.

Feiner's budget also cuts sanitation services. Leaf and snow removal will both be affected. In fact, the town is budgeting less money next year for both leaf removal and even leaf bags!

Seems Feiner and his toadies on the town board couldn't differentiate between essential and non-essential services when cutting the budget this year. As a result, the services that most of us enjoy - police and sanitation -- will decline, while other non-essential services that serve certain limited constituencies will actually see their budgets increase.

Anonymous said...

I can think of no lower priority. Give it a rest.

why? said...

meanwhile the budget still has an art curator for town hall..... thats one police position lost in exchange for a non essential service.

we have to stop the sheehanigans

Anonymous said...

and our energy czar -- give me a break

Anonymous said...

one police officer is nothing but a schedule maker

PAUL FEINER said...

UPDATE: The cybermobile will be open at Town Hall during library hours during the transition to the new library.

concerned citizen said...

The cybermobile is a waste of gas and I thought Paul we were cutting costs or is it only when you want something done you play that card.

Anonymous said...

cybermobile won't be driving around town. is stationed at town hall.

Anonymous said...

Paul I think that you should stop plaqying games.

The library and this bus have been a total disaster,

Stop taking peoples hard earned money to make you look good. It's a little too late .

Anonymous said...

SO there not going to turn it on to keep warm, I find that hard to believe.

hal samis said...

Heard at Tuesday's work session.

The Town Board is still giving serious consideration to extending a renewal contract with the Hartsdale Station sculpture curator.

Now her fee down to $3000 for her services, having reduced the exhibits to three from four and they are still haggling over $200 for the artist's transportation and who pays for insurance.

$3000 is still a lot of money for 3hours work. $3000 is still a lot of money to spend on something unnecessary; more so in this economic climate.

Now against the larger issues in the course of discussing the $76 million Town budget, one may argue that $3000 or so is trivial. To this viewpoint I would question it is so unimportant that the Town Board has now met four times to discuss this. Mr. Feiner puts forth that this exhibition can make or break the well being of downtown Hartsdale. How do the four members of the Town Council resist the impulse to laugh?

This writer believes that the basis of this pursuit of the sublime is really the pursuit of a campaign contribution being funnelled back to the Supervisor's coffers by contributors who appear unrelated to the curator.

At a time when the Town is unjustifiably hemorrhaging Fund Balance dollars by the desire to ease the taxpayer burden, how can the Town Board still be spending time on this fluff and instructing the Town Attorney to draw up a contract?

There is more here than meets the eye and this may be the one nail that loses Feiner the kingdom.

Take heed Mr. Feiner.
I'm taking the kid gloves off. Regard this posting like you would a glove slapped in the face of the Town Board. Last fall, laughing at this glove were Steve Bass and Eddie Mae Barnes.

Even a teflon coating can disappear when friction is applied.

Anonymous said...

Hal, lets start dealing with real money. Lets give the TDYCC to the YMCA (forget selling, just give)

Anonymous said...

Sorry, posted on wrong thread --

And lets just say swimming is necessary. The town could provide say $250,000 per year in scholarships for needy children. My back of the envelope tells me that should be about $250 per year for every child in Fairview under age 12.

Paul Feiner said...

Hal: I read your blog comment about contributors and the sculpture program. I have not received contributions from the sculptors, artists or curator. I honestly believe that the sculptures on E Hartsdale Ave have benefitted the avenue.
Five or six years ago half of E Hartsdale Ave was vacant. Today, most of the stores have been rented or are on the verge of being rented.

Anonymous said...

Paul if you really believe people are renting the stores because of the art displayed their you are totally delirious. Maybe the fact that a lot of people travel this road everyday gives the merchants a great reason to rent these locations. But i'll do one even better for you, fix the flooding problem and the 3 or 4 store owners that up and left after last big storm would still be their.

hal samis said...

Paul,

Even if you have not received "direct" contributions from those benefitting, or even a piece of art for your home or an item obtained at a special discount, you have absolutely no basis for assuming that this exhibit benefits shopkeepers.

What would benefit them would be giving them $3000 in quarters or "tokens" to use for free parking for their customers or themselves.

Maintaining this kind of "artwerks" program to its limited Hartsdale audience is not the offset to the millions spent at the Community Center. Nor does the curator even follow the prescription for exhibiting "local" artists which, if not defined as Greenburgh, certainly does not embrace the current exhibitor from NYC.

Furthermore, if you seek any support from taxpayers, you would recognize that you are overpaying for this program. The curator is full-time employed running a gallery and is daily exposed to the art world and its suppliers. Her selection process is already part of her full-time livelihood and this $3000 is pure gravy -- no one buys her story of all those hours she puts in. Furthermore, she enjoys peripheral benefits from selecting artists who may be represented by her, her gallery or other galleries with which she may enjoy certain "quid pro quo" compensation if sales are consummated. Getting an artist displayed in Hartsdale may even be the first step to having them sign with her as agent.

Then too, she is being paid not to present choices to a CITIZEN's art committee for their decision but to have exclusive right to decide. The Town Board for all their pluses and minuses do not strike me as individuals with creative sensibilities.

As for artists who exhibit, artists seek to display their work and jockey to get space in galleries so as to expand their universe of potential sales. If the Town is permitting their work to displayed in a prominent location, the artist and the curator who presumably reap the fruit down the line, should be paying the Town for the opportunity to exhibit -- not unlike galleries which pay rent to building owners. Whereas this is not the result I seek, I do not accept any justification for the Town to be paying money to the curator and artists for what is really something for their own gain.

And don't suggest that the Town is going into the art sales business by seeking a commission from any future sales as though this is either a realistic approach or administratively enforceable.

Make this go away or watch the Feiner team pedal off to join Bass and Barnes in retirement.

In these harsh times, every dollar is needed. Every dollar saved is a dollar not removed from taxpayer wallets.

And this includes the Council on the Arts which is considerably bigger dollars for services which can be rendered by the Library and the Schools at no additional cost to taxpayers.

These kind of pursuits remind readers that it is a way overdue acknowlegement that you stop spending our dollars to buy your votes. When the Town till is flush, then you can resume loading up on marginal and limited market service projects.

The effort I am spending in opposing this distraction from Town problems is commensurate with the effort that you have led the Town Board in promoting this farrago at four separate Town Board work sessions. If I am to be judged as making a mountain out of a molehill, it is you who keeps delivering the raw materials.

Now is simply the wrong time.

hal samis said...

The above comment notwithstanding,
let me comment on a typical reaction of the Library to providing service while moving.

Given that the Library would otherwise be "down" for a month, I suggested that the cybermobile be used to provide some minimal level of service. I assumed that the cybermobile would take to the road as the announced plan had been to maintain the desk in the Town Hall library for handling returns and to circulate "on reserve" titles.

I proposed that the most popular titles be kept in circulation and later to rejoin their brethern after the opening.

I can't get believe the response of the library being to use the cybermobile tethered outside town hall, maintain the desk in the lobby (about 35 feet away) and shut down completely the space in the cafeteria. My version of common sense is that if the cybermobile was not to be put back on the road, then keep some shelves in the cafeteria for the popular titles, shut down the lobby desk and not use the cybermobile which must be separately heated.

As for the few bookshelves, books and computers remaining in the cafeteria, if the Town can't provide a vehicle to move them, there is always a $29.95 truck rental.

What we end up with is the worst of all worlds. Which is understandable since "Candide" is not one of the most popular titles.

Anonymous said...

Hal: I'm a big fan of your comments, but you are weakening your (and our) cause by all this over-the-top bluster. Please just stick to your excellent investigative reporting and pointed criticisms. And, truthfully, until viable candidates magically reveal themselves to oppose the current board, all these threats to defeinerstrate the town, are just empty rhetoric. I'm sure Paul remembers how you came crawling back to his camp after Berger's nomination.

hal samis said...

Dear fan:

I am an equal opportunity fault finder. The Library, a department I know well, has given food for thought for years. Since they are lavish in their spending, they put out a great spread. I'm sorry you don't like when I criticize the Library management but fair is fair and I can't give them a pass and only look at the Town Board.

If your reference to bluster instead is because of my comments regarding the performance specs of the Town Board, let me assure you that there residents who are speaking seriously of how to correct these elective mistakes.

What you describe as crawling back to Paul's camp after Berger's nomination is not wholly accurate.
"Back" is to return which assuredly was not the case. Supporting Feiner over Berger was willful and the choice was between experience (good or bad) over inexperience. I'm not awarding just anyone with the title because they are willing to run against Feiner. They have to work for it.

And what I said then still applies.
Many of the trivial complaints about Feiner are the result of a career politician in a two year job. He has to run starting with the date of taking his oath for his current term. And despite his perceived power, he still needs two votes to get his way. That was the origin of just three votes. Now he has all five votes so things can't get worse. And the track record of just five votes has done little to disabuse me of this notion.

But help may be arriving. There is talk...
Let's get the budget out of the way first.

Anonymous said...

WHITEHEAD STILL MAKING THE BIG BUCKS AND DOING NOTHING!

Finally a qualified, educated Commissioner with an established track record has been hired for the TDYCC, However in a total waste of taxpayer dollars, Whitehead who is under police investigation is still getting the double salary raise, not punching in, leaving the work place, and doing absolutely NOTHING! Why is Sonya so determined to champion this misfit!?!?!? Whitehead must have the goods on someone. What a rotten message to honest town employees who are working hard every working day. Worse still is the public sees the ENTIRE Center as being under investigation when it is ONLY VALERIE WHITEHEAD who committed thief of services crimes. But the whole Department's reputation is being made to suffer because of her selfishness, greed, and need for power. A blind person could see that she accomplished NOTHING during her time as Interim Commissioner. She gave away the farm to no show staff, including her nephew. So now as a result of her overspending, legitimate services will need to be cut. She is an affront to any person who is decent. Yet she dares calls herself "blessed". Actually she is indeed blessed...

Blessed by Greenburgh taxpayers who AREN'T calling for her termination.

Anonymous said...

Sorry you had no legitamate services at the center.

If you had to pay for the programs instead of crying poverty the center would be a money making deal. But it has been a place taking tax dollars to fill someones pockets in anyway available.

Whitehead may have done what you say but her name has justm been put foward since others were let go,

Let's be fair mismanagement of the center has been going on for many years.
Feiner wanted this place for the town but never treated it as a business.

It was a welfare establishment that had millions of dollars each year thrown in that direction.
They asked they got No questions asked.

NICE IF YOU CAN GET IT.

Anonymous said...

To 11:12, George, this doesn't belong here. What does all that doing under the cybermobile question. I guess if you put this everywhere someone will finally read it. Your a frustrated person with nothing to do.