City fires library director


This story from NJ on an angry library board. This is interesting because they are talking about hiring a private company now.

Frustrated with the rapid decline of its library system, the board of trustees has ousted its longtime director and may hire a private company to run day-to-day operations.

The board voted last week to fire Library Director Kwaku Amoabeng as of today following a board-commissioned study that called the overall library service \"pathetic\" and suggested that only a complete overhaul would save the once-proud institution.
The board is also examining whether to hire Library Systems and Services Inc. of Maryland to run the four-branch library. The company was hired in 1998 to run the daily operations of the Jersey City system, and board members there say it has done a good job.

Amoabeng, who was hired by the library in 1986 and rose to become director in 1993, declined to comment on the loss of his $59,631-a-year job. It was unclear if he received a buyout.

Amoabeng\'s removal was expected soon after the unusually blunt report came out last year that criticized almost every aspect of the library system.

It complained that Amoabeng offered no plans to improve the library system and showed no leadership skills. It also said that previous recommendations for improvement had been ignored and that statistics showed a library that had seen its annual circulation and attendance declining for years.

Library trustees -- backed by Mayor Marty Barnes -- say the time had come for a change in the troubled system and it made sense to replace Amoabeng.

\"There was talk there had to be a cleanup,\" trustee Harry Dente said. \"It seems that he has no control over his people. Look, he\'s a nice person. Don\'t get me wrong. I was one of the last people who wanted to get rid of him. But rather than delegate authority, he does everything himself. You can\'t do that.\"