Library system fights eviction
By MICHAEL HALL The Brunswick News
The Three Rivers Regional Library System is asking a county court to let it stay in Brunswick.
Either that or make Glynn County compensate it for having to move to a new home.
Its demands are outlined in a lawsuit filed against Glynn County following a notice of eviction from the Brunswick-Glynn County Library on Gloucester Street in downtown Brunswick.
In the lawsuit filed by attorney Charles Bachman Jr. in Glynn County Superior Court Friday, the library system is asking the court for an injunction to stop the eviction issued to it by the county on April 11.
The eviction follows the decision earlier this year by the board of trustees of the Brunswick-Glynn County Library to leave the seven-county regional system and form its own single-county system.
Glynn County owns both the downtown library, 208 Gloucester St., and the St. Simons Island Library in the Casino near Neptune Park.
The regional system says it is entitled to a payment or a place in the downtown library, where it houses its computer servers, other equipment and 10 employees, because it provided $1.5 million in 2003 to renovate the Brunswick facility.
It also says the more than $2 million given by the state to renovate the library and buy equipment for it entitles the system to payment.
"(The system) will suffer irreparable harm, injury, loss and damage for which there is no adequate remedy at law. By virtue of foregoing improper conduct by (Glynn County), (the system) is, and continues to be irreparably harmed," Bachman writes in the lawsuit.
The lawsuit acknowledges there is no official lease agreement between the two parties and says the library system's occupancy in the long-term has been implied. It also says the system tried to work with the county to negotiate a lease several times, but the county would not work with it.
The library system is requesting a jury trial at which payment for damages will be determined should the jury find in its favor.
Glynn County Commission Chairwoman Mary Hunt said the lawsuit does not change the county's plans to drop out of the Three Rivers Regional Library System and added that it keeping a presence in the building on Gloucester Street is not an option because the county owns the building and no lease agreement exists.
How the county will move forward with the lawsuit is still to be determined.
"We haven't had a conversation as a commission to discuss how we will proceed," Hunt said.
She is disappointed the county and Three Rivers Regional Library System could not work out an agreement otherwise, but added the county is not planning to let it stay.
Other counties in the Three Rivers system are Brantley, Camden, Charlton, Long, McIntosh and Wayne.
* Reporter Michael Hall writes about public safety, environment and other local topics. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Facebook or at 265-8320, ext. 320.