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Library board members draw council fire
By Robert Sanchez | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 6/29/2010 5:08 PM | Updated: 6/29/2010 10:33 PM

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Some Wheaton Public Library board members could be replaced because of the ongoing dispute between their panel and the city council.

Because library board members are appointed by Mayor Michael Gresk and approved by the council, the mayor could pick new trustees when three of the nine seats are up for reappointment.

As a result, library board President Colleen McLaughlin said she's concerned either Stacy Slater or Carri Peterson won't be reappointed now that their terms are set to expire. Board member Martin L. Kyle retired earlier this month.

Several city council members made it clear they won't support the reappointment of any library board members who supported a plan to close the library on Fridays.

McLaughlin said she's disappointed council members are taking that position.

"This is a volunteer position," she said. "I think it's disrespectful to the board to infer that we're not doing our job ... and that we must be removed because we're not following the wishes of the council."

The council is even talking about the possibility of reducing the term of future library board members from three years to two. Councilman Howard Levine said that proposal would make it possible to replace uncooperative library board members sooner.

"We are the only people who are elected, so we're the ones who are ultimately accountable," Levine said. "It's up to us to make sure the people on the library board reflect our views."