Library Budget

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Re: Library Budget

Postby Fitzie » Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:18 pm

I thank the Lord every day that I do not live in MMK any longer, and I'm sure many locals are pleased with my leaving as well. :)

"I didn't have this, we don't need that, replace them with a machine, people are hurting, homes lost, locusts, plague....." on and on and on it goes, like a Fox News special. I can just see the flag waving in the background.

What I find ironic is those beating the privatization drum are the very one who argued against privatization of the muni-service most readily and cost effectively privatized, that being the waste stream. Here, they screamed for CHOICE!!!! LIVE FREE OR DIE!!!!! BLA BLA BLA BLA BLA........mostly because they hated me. Too funny, it really is. You want to close your libray but keep hauling your own rotting organic matter to a common collection spot.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Jeannine Stergios » Wed Jan 19, 2011 1:30 pm

Well well - Get over it. You moved to Nashua, made a good profit on your home here in Merrimack. We no longer discuss politics here. Maybe you should spew your poison on the Nashua Forum.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Fitzie » Wed Jan 19, 2011 2:37 pm

Nice to hear from you as well Jeannine.

My comments were no more political than yours. I'm simply pointing out the irony in a position that values trash more than a library.
I'm not spewing poison.....I'm not the one calling for people's careers to be halted because I'm bitter over.....apparently everything. When I read some of the comments here I get the strong sensation that some of you enjoy being miserable and are uncomfortable in any other emotional condition.

If MMK is wondering why it can't keep a TM it just needs to look in the mirror. What TM in his/her right mind (with options) would want to be ultimately held responsible for the operation of a town that literally values trash over libraries? The only one that comes to mind may be Rochester's, where they long ago exchanged their collective souls for lower taxes accompanied by the constant aroma of decomposition.

Just out of curiosity, do you support privatizing MMK's waste?

As far as libraries being replaced by a Kindle, in my mind there's no comparison. I'm happy there's one in Nashua and I hope MMK sees the value in keeping one as well. More than anything, my property values might be damaged if our nearest neighboring city compounds its waste errors with the closure of its library. 8)
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Jeannine Stergios » Wed Jan 19, 2011 3:50 pm

Mark

I would be in favor of privatizing trash and I never suggested to close the library.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby nis » Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:30 am

MissyB wrote:The problem may be the number of full-time Master Degree personnel, RBarnes, to your point. Pat McGrath posted that we have 7 full-time employees, most of whom have Master's Degrees. Other libraries may not have as many with Master's Degrees, nor have to carry the expense of those salaries. That is what struck me at the Library's budget session.


I am just guessing, but I think the head of a department must have a Master's Degree and the Director as well. That would be 5 positions, which qualifies as "most" to me. It is hard to imagine that other libraries have less than that. Anybody know for sure? Fitzie, what about Nashua?

Also, I am not as educated about volunteers as other people on this forum, but doesn't having volunteers mean that they are not required to come to work? So let's say if they don't feel like volunteering on a particular day, I am stuck outside the library wondering what happened?
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Re: Library Budget

Postby MissyB » Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:24 am

Wow. A Library Director and four Departments and Department Heads in that little building. Sounds like a dynasty to me. You would think the Department Heads would be tripping over each over. I would cut the budget in half and tell them to combine departments.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Fitzie » Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:28 am

nis,

See http://www.nashualibrary.org/staff_directory.htm

I count 44, all in.

Merrimack would appear to have 12

As a ratio that puts 1 employee per every 1,977 residents in Nashua and 1 per every 2,250 in MMK.

Oh ya....AND they pick up our trash in front of our house. Every week....... :D (You might not know me but those who do will understand)
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Re: Library Budget

Postby RBarnes » Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:14 am

MissyB wrote:The problem may be the number of full-time Master Degree personnel, RBarnes, to your point. Pat McGrath posted that we have 7 full-time employees, most of whom have Master's Degrees. Other libraries may not have as many with Master's Degrees, nor have to carry the expense of those salaries. That is what struck me at the Library's budget session.


That's a fair question to raise.

A few years ago when the bud com still covered the town's budget as well there was a study done showing where we underpaid town employees here vs other towns. My criticism of that study was that the selectmen at the time used to to increase pay for underpaid employees but they failed to look at where Merrimack pays more then other towns. And this study went far beyond just the library for the record.

Maybe it's time for another study to see where we over pay this time and which town departments have more employees per citizens then other towns do.

The one problem I see here is that our councilors don't seem to be asking those questions. I'm hearing a lot of assumptions but I don't really see anyone showing data to back them up. If we have more employees then other towns of equal sizes then build that argument. If we have more staff in our library as other libraries with equal utilization then build that argument.

The point I'm making here is that I'd just like to see the time taken to get the facts regardless of which side of the argument anyone is on.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby RBarnes » Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:31 am

Fitzie wrote:You want to close your libray but keep hauling your own rotting organic matter to a common collection spot.


Exactly.

Working in Merrimack as well as living here allows me to utilize services during typical work hours. I've been to both the library and the transfer station on my lunch hour and there is a huge difference in utilization.

I was in the library yesterday a little after 1. You could not find a parking spot and they needed 2 or 3 people just to keep up with the checking in and checking out of books and there was still a line of people waiting.

Meanwhile last time I was at the transfer station during lunch there was 1 other car dropping off their trash. The only time I find myself having to wait at all is on Saturday and even then if I go between noon and 3 the traffic has died to the point there is no wait.

If you are going to argue to cut back hours does it make sense to cut them on the town service that is being fully utilized or the one that is rarely utilized?
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Dennis King » Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:52 am

Fitzie wrote:I thank the Lord every day that I do not live in MMK any longer, and I'm sure many locals are pleased with my leaving as well. :)

As I recall, you sold your house (across from the dump) just before the vote, nuff said.

"I didn't have this, we don't need that, replace them with a machine, people are hurting, homes lost, locusts, plague....." on and on and on it goes, like a Fox News special. I can just see the flag waving in the background.

It is nice to hear you are so prosperous but many of your former neighbors have lost their homes or are just barely getting by. The pensions are the real problem and with the state just mandating them and then throwing more costs onto us taxpayers makes it worse. We are indeed at a crisis and it is not a taxing one, it is a spending problem. Some communities in California have closed their libraries to control their budgets and they are still billions in the red. Throwing money at a problem is not the answer and we must look at innovations which increase productivity but only it seems in the public sector, the public employees fight this tooth and nail as it mean a loss of jobs.

What I find ironic is those beating the privatization drum are the very one who argued against privatization of the muni-service most readily and cost effectively privatized, that being the waste stream. Here, they screamed for CHOICE!!!! LIVE FREE OR DIE!!!!! BLA BLA BLA BLA BLA........mostly because they hated me. Too funny, it really is. You want to close your libray but keep hauling your own rotting organic matter to a common collection spot.


More trash talk? Please after so many years we got to stop the old divide and conquer game. We do have choice, people who want the luxury of curbside can choice it and those who self haul can chose that. I do agree we could privatize the running of the TS and have suggested that for years. Single stream is a great success and a revenue producer that continues to go up thus reducing the overall costs. I bet a private company would save us 1/3 the cost and we should look into it. As for other areas to cut, eliminate the Day Camp, eliminate Parks and Rec and let the conservation commission and MYA take over those roles, eliminate the library and put out to bid for a new and used book store/coffee shop with kindle upload service and a children's library downstairs. We should also cut one patrol which would save close to a million. The DPW could be privatized (lots of property management companies who could bid on that and I bet we have lots of out of work truck drivers in town who would love the extra money in winter to plow (think of all the people in construction). We could also look at a 4 day work week at town hall to save money and changing the shift schedule for our fireman, the thought of paying people to sleep never felt right to me; in the new Continental Blvd Fire house, we could save considerably in less square footage for their "bedrooms" and the beds that go with them. As for the size of the department, that may also be cut but I am not sure on this, just that it should be looked into.
I should note I do not hate any of these people and in a perfect world, everything could go on as it always has. Trouble is, the unions have bankrupted us, each retiree in NH gets 1.1 million dollars more than they put in and the difference comes from us taxpayers. Oh and the schools, I would love to privatize them! Oh yeah, big savings there and better quality. This is coming from a graduate of Catholic school which costs at least half the cost of public schools. Of course we would have to rethink the after school programs but a merger with the MYA would work great here (oh that law, can't replace paid people with volunteers who do it for free). But if you do away with the school entirely, well it is a fresh slate. Our town is like a computer, time to reboot.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Jeannine Stergios » Thu Jan 20, 2011 12:29 pm

Rick Barnes

Now I wonder where that crowd came from at the library yesterday at 1 pm because I drove by around 12:30 and there were two cars in the parking lot. Must have been all those part-time employees showing up for work.

We do not need 7 people with Masters Degrees to manage books. in fact I'm not sure it requires a Masters Degree to run a library. We need to look at these top heavy departments. And MissyB - I agree regarding a dynasty.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby RBarnes » Thu Jan 20, 2011 12:49 pm

Jeannine Stergios wrote:Now I wonder where that crowd came from at the library yesterday at 1 pm because I drove by around 12:30 and there were two cars in the parking lot. Must have been all those part-time employees showing up for work.


Keep in mind they don't open until 1 on Wed.
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Re: Library Budget

Postby RD » Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:40 pm

Dennis King wrote:
I do agree we could privatize the running of the TS and have suggested that for years. Single stream is a great success and a revenue producer that continues to go up thus reducing the overall costs. I bet a private company would save us 1/3 the cost and we should look into it. As for other areas to cut, eliminate the Day Camp, eliminate Parks and Rec and let the conservation commission and MYA take over those roles, eliminate the library and put out to bid for a new and used book store/coffee shop with kindle upload service and a children's library downstairs. We should also cut one patrol which would save close to a million. The DPW could be privatized (lots of property management companies who could bid on that and I bet we have lots of out of work truck drivers in town who would love the extra money in winter to plow (think of all the people in construction). We could also look at a 4 day work week at town hall to save money and changing the shift schedule for our fireman, the thought of paying people to sleep never felt right to me; in the new Continental Blvd Fire house, we could save considerably in less square footage for their "bedrooms" and the beds that go with them. As for the size of the department, that may also be cut but I am not sure on this, just that it should be looked into.
I should note I do not hate any of these people and in a perfect world, everything could go on as it always has. Trouble is, the unions have bankrupted us, each retiree in NH gets 1.1 million dollars more than they put in and the difference comes from us taxpayers.

Now why isn't anyone taking all these incredible suggestions seriously? I especially like this one:

Oh and the schools, I would love to privatize them! Oh yeah, big savings there and better quality. This is coming from a graduate of Catholic school which costs at least half the cost of public schools. Of course we would have to rethink the after school programs but a merger with the MYA would work great here (oh that law, can't replace paid people with volunteers who do it for free). But if you do away with the school entirely, well it is a fresh slate. Our town is like a computer, time to reboot.

I think the idea of doing away with Merrimack's schools is up there with his suggestion that the town of Merrimack do away with the U.S. Department of Education! Good stuff!
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Fitzie » Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:42 pm

Dennis, Dennis, Dennis...........I had been trying to find a home in the North End of Nashua for years, long before I unknowingly became involved in the dump wars. I was always EVENTUALLY leaving, as we all do either by foot or in a box. I only became involved when I attended my first original SWAC meeting and learned they had never.....again NEVER.....investigated the cost of municipal curbside yet was recommending a TS based on cost. Mind-boggling really. I don't blame the SWAC, I blame the administration who did as little as humanly possible while holding an advisory seat on that board. Latterly I blame the PB for not stepping up when they were most needed when it came to the siting issues, but in hindsight I didn't know their 2nd longest tenured member didn't want the subject broached. I'll state here and for the record that it was only a presentation Norman and I did to the BC regarding the inability of the road to accommodate a trash trailer and a bus.....at the same time......that led to that curve being fixed. Were it not for that, well I don't even like to think about it. Anyway...........

I still believe there's a conflict in the argument that it's OK to pay more in the name of a choice when it comes to trash, but NOT OK when it comes to other municipal/governmental functions such as the library. But as you rightly point out, it's not my Town. I only speak as an interested neighbor.

As far as "divide and conquer", well it looks to me you're doing a whole lot more of that than anyone else here by a longshot.

One last thing.....IMHO it is disingenuous to refer to the generic "neighbors" so often as a mechanism to bring legitimacy to your arguments. This for instance:
many of your former neighbors have lost their homes or are just barely getting by
is crrrrrrrap. WHO? WHEN? This is meant to soften the reader up for your REAL target.....the pensions. In this way you connect "the pensions" with people losing their homes. Its crap Dennis but its tricky and I can see why you'd do it. Its more of what I mentioned earlier....."lost homes, barely getting by, floods, river of blood, meteorite impact, bla bla bla"......then THE PENSIONS DID IT!!!!!
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Re: Library Budget

Postby Jeannine Stergios » Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:56 pm

Fitzie

There are people losing their homes. I happen to know of several in my neighborhood who have lost their homes recently.
In fact, one neighbor was on the verge of losing their home and practically gave it away this week to avoid foreclosure.

How dare you come on here and mock those of us who have been going through very hard economic times and call it an exaggeration. Lucky for you that you haven't experienced the hard times these past few years.

I simply wish you would POOF - go away with your fighting attitude with trash. Sick of hearing about it.
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