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updated: 8/26/2011 4:49 PM

Sugar Grove Library statement fails to please critics

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  • Rick West/rwest@dailyherald.com  Citizens for a Better Sugar Grove plans to protest the firing of Sugar Grove Library director Beverly Holmes Hughes Thursday's library board meeting.

      Rick West/rwest@dailyherald.com Citizens for a Better Sugar Grove plans to protest the firing of Sugar Grove Library director Beverly Holmes Hughes Thursday's library board meeting.

 
 

Complaints, criticism and allegations filled the air during and after the most recent Sugar Grove Library board meeting.

After hearing board secretary Bill Durrenberger read the board's statement about the firing of former director Beverly Holmes Hughes attributed, in part, to increased tension between her and several trustees, things heated up.

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As board members departed Thursday night, members of the crowd yelled "Shame on you!" at trustees Julie Wilson, Art Morrical and Joan Roth.

Erin Erickson, a former trustee seeking to fill a vacancy on the board, said that Wilson and Bob Bergman were appointed to the board solely to get enough votes to fire Hughes. Wilson and Bergman were trustees until April 30 when their terms expired. Neither was on the April ballot but both were reappointed to the board in late May.

Bergman said it wasn't that he didn't want to remain on the library board. He wasn't on the ballot because he made a mistake on his election petitions last fall, he said. By the time it was discovered during the filing period in December 2010, he was unable to rectify the situation.

"I've always been an advocate for the library," said Wilson, who decided last fall not to run because she needed to care for an ill relative. But by May, her family urged her to rejoin the board. "They freed up my time," she said.

• The board has hired Marilyn Boria as interim director. Boria recently retired as director of the Elmhurst Public Library. After Thursday's meeting, several of the protesters introduced themselves to Boria and welcomed her, stating they wanted her to know they have nothing against her.

Library critics have, however, complained about how much the library has been paying its interim directors, saying it works out to double what it paid Hughes.

Former interim director Arlene Kaspik was paid $80 an hour, and Boria will be paid $72. Boria said she expects to work 15 to 20 hours a week until a new director is hired.

A check of job listings on the Illinois Library Association website shows the Lisle and Ela Township libraries advertising minimum salaries of $100,000 and $105,000, respectively, for permanent directors.

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