Library roof project waiting on loan

Published 6:02 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2011

It’s been a long time coming, but a new roof for the Chilton/Clanton Public Library appears likely.

But don’t look for construction to start this year.

The Chilton County Commission voted at its Nov. 14 meeting to borrow about $250,000, the estimated amount necessary to repair the library’s leaky roof with a pitched, gable, metal roof.

The commission had known what it would take to replace the roof for a while but made the decision after commissioner “Red” Turnipseed worked with a representative of the United States Department of Agriculture on a loan that would carry a relatively low interest rate, 3.375 percent.

“My wife likes to read, and we need the library for people who want to use it,” Turnipseed said. “Libraries help broaden our horizons.”

Employees at the library have been familiar with the problem even longer.

Director Kelly Easterling said roof leaks have been a problem for about 10 years.

“Just about every area in the library, we have to put out buckets and garbage cans every time it rains,” Easterling said. “Water and books don’t mix very well.”

The library was built in 1967.

Work won’t start until USDA processes the loan, which Turnipseed said could take 3-6 months.

The project shouldn’t take long after the county receives the money because it has already been bidded out and the county has purchased architectural drawings.

“I’m glad we’re getting it,” Easterling said. “We need it badly. It’s also going to improve the appearance of the library.”