Meeting: Jasper Public Library

The Jasper Public Library Board met Thursday and:

• Approved a resolution making the Jasper Common Council the fiscal body for the Jasper Public Library, as required by state law. As the fiscal body, the council will review the library's budget annually.

• Heard an update on construction of the Thyen-Clark Cultural Center, which will house the library and the Jasper Community Arts Commission. The project is on track for completion in the fall of 2020. The construction fencing is scheduled to come down in October. Duct work and drywall work in the library portion is nearing completion. Landscape work is beginning, and planting and seeding will begin in September. All the plants will be native to Indiana.

• Discussed the proposed 2021 budget. The total proposed budget is about $2,029,000, about $22,000 less than the 2020 budget. The total property tax levy — which includes the referendum and operating budget — is $1,371,668. The budget accounts for any adjustments that will need to be made when the library moves into the Thyen-Clark Cultural Center at the end of 2020 and potential revenue loss due to the economic effects of COVID-19. The board will hold a budget hearing at the September meeting, set for 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10, with approval set for October.

• Heard that Ben Schitter will construct a permanent story walk around the cultural center and Schaeffer Barn area for his Eagle Scout project. A story walk spreads a children's book along a path on yard signs that children and families can read as they walk. Librarians will be able to update the story that is displayed on the permanent signs. Installation will happen after the library moves into the building, with a target completion date of summer 2021.

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