Atlanta Library Board is clueless

By:  Diane Benjamin

I attended the Atlanta Public Library Board meeting last night.  One thing is clear, the Board needs replaced and every vestige of Bill Thomas needs eliminated.

Keep in mind, the crowd opposing this board stopped them from paying Bill Thomas (BOARD MEMBER) $200,000 for Union Hall.  The have every right to watch very nickel this board receives and spends.  The Board has proven themselves to be less than good stewards of taxpayer money.  That stopped payment is far from the only malfeasance by the library board.  If you don’t know, Thomas donated the building to the library likely to avoid possible prosecution.

Supposedly the renovations at Union Hall are being paid for with a grant from the Woods Foundation – $25,000.  Where is that money?  Where was it reported to the public?  Is it in yet another bank account?  The Library Board doesn’t seem to understand that all money they receive belongs to the citizens, not them.  Think the citizens don’t have a right to be suspicious when information isn’t provided?

A rental agreement was created months ago with the operators of the Palms Grill after extreme funny business was going on with the books.  I’m shocked the rent they pay the library is a measly $300 a month.  I hear library funds end up going back to the Grill, more on that at some point.

Bill Thomas’s name is still on the library credit card even though he has been off the board for many months and citizens have been asking for months that it be removed.

Multiple bank accounts are still open in the library’s name, they only report on the main account at meetings.  Board President Randy Brooks claimed months ago he didn’t know about all of the accounts created by Bill Thomas and said they would be closed.  I believe the watchdogs found 8 or 9 accounts.  Maybe the $25,000 grant is in one of them.  Citizens will find out.

Rachel Neisler, Bill Thomas’s daughter, made a point of showing me two books I wrote about earlier.      https://blnnews.com/2018/09/13/is-this-a-case-of-credit-card-fraud-theft-at-atlanta-public-library-district/

Rachel claims they aren’t in the card catalog because they are coffee-table books that can’t be checked out.  The only way you can see them is at the library.  These are the books purchased with her mom’s Amazon account.  That raises a number of questions:

  • Why can’t coffee-table books be checked out?
  • Why doesn’t the library have an Amazon account?
  • Was Sales Tax paid on books that should be tax exempt because a government card wasn’t used?  Let’s check:  Chris’s books

Yep, this tax exempt library paid sales tax on books.  Rachel, how many other books do you buy and pay sales tax on them?

See why the watchdogs job isn’t done?

A police officer stood at the back during the meeting.  A board member I talked to claimed they didn’t call him.  There is always a crowd at these meetings because of this board’s past actions. The board is terrified of the mostly senior citizens who just want laws followed and shenanigans at taxpayer expense ended.

Voting in a whole new Board looks like the only way to make that happen.

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6 thoughts on “Atlanta Library Board is clueless

  1. Did Rachel miss the line in the last article that a local resident WALKED IN TO the library and asked for the books? The resident was told there were no books.
    I can understand not checking some of the first edition books the library has, but a recent “coffee table book”? Get real.

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  2. One board member made a comment to me when I questioned things that the watchdogs are making baseless insinuations without any facts. I think I have seen enough facts to make an opinion. How convenient that the books show up on a coffee table. All books, regardless of whether they can be checked out should be cataloged because they are an asset of the library/taxpayer property that should be inventoried. And if Rachel is so familiar with the coffee table books (that could easily walk away and if not inventoried you wouldn’t know they were missing). Then when the FIOA Request came thru she should have easily been able to account for the books. My opinion continues to be that the Thomas family appear to be nothing more than crooks . It is my opinion that both Rachel and Cathy need to be fired! The board needs to go too! Funny how the only people they can get to be on that board is people who have only lived in the community for very short periods of time. How stupid do you have to be? Jim Welchel looses to Bill Thomas by 2 votes and even after the election there is still an open seat on the board and his buddy Randy won’t appoint him cause rumor has it that Karen Horn supposedly didn’t like him so she didn’t want him on the board BUT when they were desperate for board members then it is okay to have him fill a seat. SUCKERS is all I can say to the last three appointees . I hope Jim sits right next Karen at the board meeting.

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  3. 1st edition books! Rumor has it that those disappeared too because Bill collects those. I heard he has quite a collection on the book shelves of his home. I’m sure those inventory records will conviently vanish as well. Some say “but he has done so much for this community “. This community has been nothing more than a cash cow for him. Based on what has been presented thus far and how people have blindly followed him. It appears as though he has taken more than he has given. I’ve noticed he always wants to be in charge of the money and I’ve been told that he is working on huge grant from the feds for Route 66. He has no business handling public money. You need to call Darin LaHoods office and complain . I did! You can call his Washington DC Office at 202-225-9249. All taxpayers should call because any money he gets belongs to everyone in this country since it is federal money. Also if you gave $1,000 or more to the Atlanta community endowment you might want to ask for a full accounting of what was received. Evidently, there are folks who donated but didn’t get their name on the memorial marker as they were promised. Who handled that money? Since Bill is associated with the betterment fund, I will not give to it. It is my opinion that the officers on the betterment fund board are nothing more than “Bills Hallucinogenic Followers” who can’t think for themselves but yet think they are pillars of the community. Funny, Randy thinks he is a pillar of the community! Don’t bust your drawers out laughing!

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  4. I have had EXPERIENCE with “pillars of the community” when a RARE item showed up at a local auction, and I inquired as to it’s provenance and was told it had belonged to a friend of mine. This person NEVER owned said item and it was an item that was “pillaged” from a museum. After being persecuted by the auctioneer and name called by same, and 5 years later, I found that this “pillar of the community” was pillaging the museum-AT WILL.
    Now, IF mr B collects 1st editions, it is COMMON practice amount museum curators and the like to SIGN a “NON CONFLICT OF INTEREST” waiver as part of their job. This means that IF they are employed as a curator (or on a board) of say, RARE BOOKS, then as a curator,etc they CANNOT collect RARE BOOKS for themselves WHILE in the employ of said contract. Maybe the Atlanta board should do the same..
    Maybe they should send the local officer to peruse his personal library.. Almost has chimes of a Mr Custer in Old Town Twp and his shed of goodies … BUT, that’s another story..

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  5. Hey Jim! Just to let you know… anyone who does decide to take a position on the board will be walking into office after they run you out! My money is on the watchdog group. Mr fixit you need to open your eyes and go see the Wizard and ask for some courage and a brain! Your board needs to resign and Rachel and Cathy need to be terminated.

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