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Town of Norfolk approves library bond resolution

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NORFOLK - Norfolk town officials say that the asbestos removal project at the Hepburn Library is on tap for May after approving a one-year bond anticipation note earlier this week.

“We are taking a one year bond anticipation note because we do not know what we’re going to get for grant money. We don’t know if we’re going to get it yet. They’ve changed the date a couple of times when they were going to announce it so the easiest way is to do a bond anticipation note and do the financing for whatever is left,” Town Supervisor Charles A. Pernice said. “What started with a leaky library roof turned into fryable asbestos shingles and has turned into quite the expense. I had just assumed from estimations that it would be $30,000 or $40,000 and it turned into $155,200.”

The Norfolk Hepburn Library was constructed in 1921 and is registered as a historic site.

In September 2012, the town board voted to contribute $6,000 toward roof repair work that Library Director Vicky L. Brothers had estimated to cost $7,800. Work crews later discovered fryable asbestos so the project was scaled back to only address the immediate problems with leakage. That work was completed in November 2012.

Last September, town officials accepted a $96,000 bid from Lupini Construction, Utica, for work on the roof. The work will include tearing off the asbestos-contaminated roof and installing new shingles.

“Within that ($155,200) there’s some work restoration also to keep the historical value of (the building)” Councilman Robert J. Harvey said.

The town had plans last fall to utilize a New York State Library Construction Grant, which targets new additions, rehabilitation work and handicap accessibility improvements to help pay for the work.

They are moving forward with the expectation they will be receiving a 50/50 matching grant, but there are no guarantees.

Ms. Brothers explained in the fall that the ratio could change depending on how many different libraries apply for the grant.

“They allot so much money to North Country Library System and they put out the word. Then libraries apply and then they have to go through three stages. The first step is that the library goes to submit it to the North Country Library System,” she said.

“Depending on how many libraries apply, that determines the ratio. Basically they review it and then on Oct. 10 they submit it to the state and the state reviews it. Then they submit it to the Dormitory Authority. Then they give the ok to North Country Library System and it probably doesn’t happen until August 2014.”

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