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Peter Demling: Urges library supporters to ‘seize the moment’


Thursday, October 14, 2021

It’s been great seeing all the ‘Yes’ signs around town for the Jones Library project. The level of public support for it has never been higher — but the outcome of the referendum on Nov. 2 is still very much uncertain.

That’s because signs, letters and Facebook posts don’t vote. And unless enough of us turn out for this election, we run the risk of the project failing at the very end.

Every seat in the last two library trustee elections was won by a project supporter, our elected Town Council voted 10-2 in favor of this and the vast majority of more than 300 public comments submitted to the Council supported their decision. The evidence is irrefutable: most residents support this project.

But all of that is just potential — a hopeful possibility. We now have to make it real with one final, definitive, collective action: we have to vote “Yes” in this election for the project to happen.

So mark your calendars, and make it a point to tell your friends they need to pay attention to this one. Tell them this is a serious moment, an opportunity to secure a $13.8 million state grant that there’s no guarantee will ever come again.

I’m confident that we’ll seize this moment; but confidence means nothing. So one more time for the library, and for the town, let’s do this: let’s vote.

Peter Demling

Amherst

The writer is a member of the Amherst School Committee and a resident of District 5.