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Metro Council to discuss new measures related to downtown library

5 years 1 month 5 days ago Wednesday, April 24 2019 Apr 24, 2019 April 24, 2019 6:53 AM April 24, 2019 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE- After nearly a year of waiting, work on the River Center Branch Library has resumed in downtown Baton Rouge. But the controversy surrounding the building isn't over. 

Construction started at the River Center branch earlier this month, but the fallout of last April's mishap is still playing out. In January, the city-parish hired a private law firm after filing a suit against the architect and contractor for the library. Now officials want to increase how much it can spend in litigation.

East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome is asking the Metro Council to approve a $50,000 increase to the maximum compensation for the law firm. The current maximum is a little more $17,000. 

As work on the building and litigation continues, additional costs are popping up. While the site has been under construction, space on 3rd Street has been used as a temporary library. Since the River Center branch won't be opening anytime soon, that means the temporary site will need to be open longer.

The library director is asking for the council to approve an extension to that lease for the foreseeable future. The monthly price tag would be roughly $16,000. Director Spencer Watts says that funding is in the library's budget, but it must first go through the council.  He also said those extra costs will be recovered through the ongoing litigation.

Both matters will be discussed at tonight's metro council meeting. 

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