The Hampton Library in Bridgehampton and the John Jermain Memorial Library in Sag Harbor will both hold their budget votes and trustee elections this week.
Bridgehampton and Sagaponack residents will be able to vote on the Hampton Library’s proposed $1,551,700 budget on Saturday, September 27, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. This proposal represents a $22,300—roughly 1.5 percent—increase from the current budget.
Five candidates are running unopposed for positions on the Hampton Library’s Board of Trustees: John Vendetti, Dr. Louise Collins, Tom House and Jackie Poole, as well as Matthew Rojano, who is running specifically to represent Sagaponack.
The John Jermain Memorial Library budget vote and trustee election will take place on Monday, September 29, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The library is presenting a proposed $2,399,812 budget, a $171,367—or roughly 7.7 percent—increase from the current year’s.
Six individuals are running for three open seats on the Board of Trustees. Joining incumbents Jackie Brody and Ann Lieber in the race are Caleb Kercheval, Ann Sutphen, Susan Sabin and Robert Hooke.
Ms. Brody said she hopes to finish the work she began fundraising for the library’s capital campaign. Because renovations on the century-old building are almost complete, Ms. Brody explained that she wants to see how her fundraising efforts were put to work as well as to see the library’s new bylaws, which are being rewritten “to bring the library into the 21st century.”
Ms. Lieber also is seeking reelection mainly so she can help oversee the transition back to the old building once renovations are completed. An active member of the library who helps run many of its programs, she said the library has been part of her life since she was a child.
“I actually wanted to make sure libraries are around in the future. I feel they are in jeopardy,” said Mr. Kercheval. “[John Jermain has] a great new building going up, and I hope it doesn’t become an heirloom tomato that dies on the vine.”
Ms. Sutphen hopes to help steer the library’s main focus to developing new programs for its patrons. “It’s going to be a big shift. I want to be there to help with that stuff,” she said.
Ms. Sabin said her experience on the advisory board of the Andrew Sabin Family Foundation in East Hampton shows that she has expertise in serving on boards. “I have a lot of connections with new people that move into town, younger families, and [can get them] involved in the library,” she said. “If I was elected to the board, I would love to be a liaison to the schools and the community for the library.”
Mr. Hooke has a history of donating to John Jermain, and now he wants to channel his love for books and literature into shaping decisions for the library. The sculptor said he mainly would like to see more programs geared toward children and young adults to “provide opportunities for them to further their education” and “help them develop serious interests in their lives that they can pursue along with the normal career [and] family objectives people have.”
Mr. Hooke envisions an educational fund to help college-bound students find career paths, similar to guidance at a high school, but with more emotional, psychological, and financial support.