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Trustee Carl Erikson departs from Jones Library board in Amherst

CAROL LOLLIS
Carl Erikson

CAROL LOLLIS Carl Erikson Purchase photo reprints »

Erikson submitted a letter of resignation to the town clerk’s office Jan. 14. In an email to the Gazette, Erikson explained his decision.

“Let’s just say that I found that I could not make the contributions that I went on the board to make,” Erikson said.

During the campaign, Erikson said his top priorities were strengthening the library’s finances through fundraising and preservation of the Jones Inc. endowment, and dealing with what he described as administrative stress and confusion.

Prior to joining the board, Erikson served as volunteer book shelver at the Jones for three years.

Trustees president Austin Sarat praised Erikson for his work as a trustee.

“Carl is a smart and wise person who loves the library,” Sarat said. “It was a pleasure for all of us to serve with him.”

Sarat said Erikson worked diligently on making sure the library’s financial reporting systems worked well, updating investment policies and ensuring that investments were being handled properly by advisers.

There will not be a joint meeting with the Select Board to select a replacement because town elections will take place April 9, Sarat said.

“Given the proximity to the spring election the vacancy will not be filled by a temporary appointment,” he said.

Sarat expects the five remaining trustees will be able to handle the workload for the short term.

Christopher Hoffmann, the longest-serving trustee, said losing Erikson will create a small burden, but that things are going well for trustees, the director and staff.

Hoffmann said it is an exciting time as the library launches a three-year fundraising plan put together by the Financial Development Agency of Amherst.

The plan has optimistic fundraising goals that Hoffmann said will be challenging but worth pursuing.

Meanwhile, two residents have already taken out papers for the two trustees seats up for election: incumbent Robert Pam of 229 Amity St., who was appointed to fill a vacancy last year, and newcomer Jonathan P. McCabe of 57 Glendale Road.

Residents have until Feb. 19 at 5 p.m. to pick up nomination forms for townwide office or seats as Town Meeting members. Those seeking townwide office need to return forms with signatures of 50 registered voters, while those running for seats as Town Meeting members only need one signature.

So far, those who have pulled papers for other townwide offices include incumbent Select Board members Alisa V. Brewer of 5 Fairfield St. and James Wald of 454 Old Montague Road; incumbent School Committee member Richard B. Hood; John W. Coull of 20 Sheerman Lane, an incumbent elector under the Oliver Smith will; and newcomer James Pistrang, who is seeking a one-year post as moderator.

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