Library merger approved, plastic bag ban rejected in South Hadley

Both votes Wednesday night were very close

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) – South Hadley residents voted Wednesday night to keep single-use plastic bags in town, and to merge two libraries.

Now that the South Hadley Public Library will be operating the privately-owned Gaylord Memorial Library, residents are going to see an increase in their property taxes. It won’t be a noticeable difference, however. Town Administrator Michael Sullivan says you would just be paying pennies more every year.

Those pennies will add up to between $78,000 and $91,000 to pay for the salaries of three part-time employees at the Gaylord library, and additional operational expenses to make the change. The measure was passed by only six votes.

“There was a lot of passion on both sides of the question with thoughtful discussion, and I thought it was close.

Sullivan says that the town expects the merger to be finalized by July 1, after negotiating the new library positions.

When it comes to single-use plastic bags in town, residents narrowly approved allowing retailers to continue to distribute them. Sullivan and the Town Council are still encouraging residents to use reuseable bags to preserve the environment.

Plastic Bag Ban: