Library AC has funding plan

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 25, 2011

NATCHEZ — What’s cooler than a polar bear’s toenails?

Pretty soon it could be George W. Armstrong Library, because now both the city and the county have said they’ll work to fund $18,000 each to repair the library’s broken air conditioner.

Johnny Waycaster, an architect with Waycaster Associates, represented Library Director Susan Cassagne at Tuesday’s Board of Aldermen meeting to petition to board to consider funding part of the air conditioner unit repair.

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Though the library received a grant worth $136,000, there’s not enough money left to finish all of the repairs, Waycaster said. Engineers evaluated the problem and determined that it would cost approximately $70,000 to replace the chiller — the broken part of the air-conditioning unit — or it would cost $36,000 to repair it, he said.

The Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Monday to fund $18,000 of the necessary $36,000, and Mayor Jake Middleton said it’s now up to the city to get creative to fund the remaining $18,000.

The library has 27 thermostats, Middleton said, and all of them are broken, meaning the monthly electricity bill runs from $6,000 to $7,000 because the air blows constantly.

Replacing the broken chiller would not only better the community, he said, it would also bring the library up to modern efficiency standards.