Why are you doing this right now? Why the time pressure?

The project was developed over the last several years, starting with the 2016-2021 Long Range Plan.   As part of that process, we carried out surveys of public use and desire, which made clear the mismatch between our current facility and our present/future needs.   Armed with that information, we moved to take advantage of the 2016-17 funding round of the Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program, administered by the Library Commissioners. This program is designed to make grants of up to 40 percent of eligible costs for replacement, or major remodeling, of public libraries. (Scituate, Norwell, and Weymouth have all received grants in the last or current round, and have finished or soon will start their new libraries.) The application deadline was January 25, 2017. The provisional grant was offered to Hingham in July 2018, with an initial deadline for town acceptance of January 12, 2019 -- extended to Annual Town Meeting 2019, with a final deadline of April 30, 2019. That means the Town must decide by annual town meeting, at the latest, if it can or wishes to commit to the local share.

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1. Why are you doing this right now? Why the time pressure?
2. Didn’t we just remodel the Library a few years ago? Why do we need to do it again?
3. Why can’t we just move the Children’s Department to the front of the building?
4. I’m shocked at the total cost -- $26.2 million seems huge. Why is it so much?
5. How would that affect my property tax bill?
6. I heard that the state would have given a 75 percent grant to a joint Library project submitted by two towns. Is that true? If so, why didn’t the Trustees submit a joint application for a regional Hin
7. At Town Meeting 2017, the Library warrant article said there would be other renovation plans besides this one, for the town to consider. Do those plans exist?
8. Couldn’t you have just waited until the next round of state funding?
9. If Town Meeting does not approve the funding, can’t we apply again next time?
10. In the last renovation, I remember the Library moved to the old East School while the work went on. That building is gone now. Where would the Library move temporarily this time?
11. If we approve this at Town Meeting 2019, how long would it be before the renovated Library opens?
12. Why can’t we see a model, or more detailed outside or inside color drawings?
13. We have so many other needs in Hingham: a new school to replace aging Foster School, at least one new fire station to replace 75-year-old buildings, a cramped Town Hall and even more cramped Senior Ce