The following letter appeared previously in the Daily Hampshire Gazette.
The Gazette story “Feds come through with $1 million for Jones Library project” ( 1/3) reported that the Jones Library renovation and expansion project in Amherst and the Grow Food Northampton Community Farm were the only two recipients in Hampshire County of funds from President Biden’s $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill, with the library project taking 73% of the county earmark.
Surely Hampshire County has urgent financial needs in the sectors of health, public safety, education, public works and social equity that might have benefited in the same way as did other communities in Jim McGovern’s 2nd Congressional District.
It appears the Representative McGovern was sold the same bill of goods as the Amherst Town Council majority who voted to continue pouring money into the library expansion after it grew to be $14 million over budget, and despite the fact that the Jones Library is already the 22nd largest public library in the state, and, as revealed in the Gazette and Indy recently, was found by a library space consultant to be able to accommodate its programming needs within the existing building’s square footage.
Rita Burke is a resident of Amherst