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A small price to pay for handicapped accessibility

From the Editor's Desk

Depending on whom one speaks with, most residents in Mooers do not want a new library.

There are questions over costs, demands that the library remain in the same building, anger over the location of the new library and concerns that the money saved should be spent elsewhere.

The one glaring certainty though is that the current library is not adequate for those who are disabled. It was deemed inadequate and Mooers officials were told that the library needed to be handicap accessible.

Ultimately, that’s the only thing that really matters here, and it inspired town officials to act. So they decided to construct a new library behind the Town Offices, down the road from the current, small building.

It appears they made the right decision.

I understand that times are tough, for sure. Critics see the library in the current building and think it’s working fine. Just install a handicap ramp and all will be well.

Why not spend that money on roads, or somewhere else, or use any extra funds the town gets to lower taxes.

But a ramp is not all that is needed. The library needs a lift, a new bathroom and more, and from what library officials and residents supporting the project say, the current building is inadequate and will not meet the requirements to make it fully handicap accessible.

Again, some residents might say times are tough.

I say ask a disabled individual what it is like getting around every day, really see that person and his or her frustration and pain and then say “Times are tough.”

I was at a meeting in Plattsburgh held at a local building a spiritual group uses and a wheelchair-bound woman had a terrible time making it in and maneuvering herself to the location of the gathering.

Stephen Bartlett may be reached at stephen@denpubs.com

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