Bat worries push library land grab


Steven M. Cohen writes "From the Mansfield News Journal:

Mayor John Finley says alleged concerns about bats in the branch library here are "a cheap and pathetic excuse" by the Mansfield/Richland County Library to buy a lot across the street.

But Director Joe Palmer contends the library doesn't want to move its Lucas branch. It bought the property, he said, "just in case."


First of all, I'd PAY to see the bats, but that's just me... Secondly, there are ways to get bats out of your building that cost less than $15,000. And what about the added costs of the potential move? Downtime, movers, utility transfers, etc. Plus the cost of the building once you've moved? If there is nothing else wrong with the current building besides a few bats, I'd focus on dealing with the critters and keeping the good thing I have with the old buidling and the $1 a year rent. Especially in our wonderful Ohio library funding situation...

From their strategic plan it sounds like they have been planning to build a new library building before this incident, by planning to "maintain a building fund" with a "minimum of $400,000" and hiring a "consultant" to examine the "workplace allocation."

In fact, looking at the library's homepage, I can't recall quite a strong push for more funding on a public website. I wonder if this advocacy is even legal.

There ARE ways to deal with bats (like provide a nice little house for them OUTSIDE the library), but they are a bit scary when viewed close up. I had one in my hair once, when I was stage managing a show (one of their favorite hangouts, they love the limelight), and I'd just as soon not have that happen again. They are nice and useful animals...but I prefer them at a distance.

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