Councillors remain opposed to Normal College as preferred site
TRURO - Colchester County officials are holding fast in their opposition to the Normal College being selected as the site for a new regional library.
Colchester County council wants the old hat factory/bowling alley on Prince Street as the site of a new regional library.
But council has agreed to a request from the Town of Truro for an extension of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two sides.
"They clearly say the Normal College doesn't fit their needs," Coun. Karen MacKenzie said, of library officials, in maintaining her position that the former hat factory should be selected as the site for a new library.
MacKenzie, one of three council representatives on the library board, said Truro Mayor Bill Mills has made it clear that one of his biggest reasons for wanting to convert the old Normal College into a new library is because of the need to find a use for that facility.
"I don't think that is our responsibility so I have to go with the hat factory," she said.
Other councillors agreed.
A six-member committee made up of equal representatives from both municipalities has been split on whether to construct a new library in the former Normal College or at the old hat factory site. Truro representatives have twice voted in favour of the Normal College, while the county representatives have favoured the hat factory.
Part of the MOU currently in place would see the county paying for 40 per cent of the cost of building a new facility with the town picking up the remaining share.
That agreement was set to expire Sept. 30, until the county received a request from the town to extend that until at least Oct. 15. Because county council will not meet again before that date, however, it agreed to an MOU extension until Oct. 30.
MacKenzie has previously stated that the county may not be willing to contribute any funding to the construction costs if a decision is made to locate it in the Normal College.
"To me this is just a facade for the town to get out of putting that library anywhere but the Normal College," she said, of the MOU extension.