I watched the local broadcast of the Lowell City Council meeting last night. To my surprise, a woman who offered to serve as a Trustee of the Pollard Memorial Library and whose appointment by City Manager Lynch was before the Council for a vote of approval was denied an opportunity to serve. However, two appointments by the Manager were approved—for the Planning Board and for the Zoning Board of Appeals, ostensibly to keep economic development moving smoothly in the city. Well, we need human development to move smoothly, too.
I’m a writer, so I have a soft spot for the library—that’s where the community keeps its reading material and promotes literacy. Some of my books are in there. It happens to be a fabulous public building also, with remarkable works of art and pieces of our heritage. The building is a tribute to Lowellians who fought with the Union Army in the Civil War. Last week, library trustee Nancy Pitkin was the only resident to stand up at the Council meeting and request that the councilors allow Manager Lynch to continue filling vacancies on all city boards and committees. But last night, a majority of councilors voted to “table” the appointment of Salmira Mitchell, an active resident of Centralville, to the board of library trustees. The motion was not open for discussion, and it received the required votes. That was just plain wrong. The Council as a whole should correct its action and move to approve the appointment of Salmira Mitchell as soon as possible. I want to thank her for offering to serve. I have a feeling she will be a trustee, when this situation is reviewed.