THOUSAND OAKS : Book Damage Now Surpasses $100,000

A month after a rainstorm drenched about 1,600 books in the Thousand Oaks Library, officials are estimating that it will cost more than $100,000 to replace those waterlogged books.

"It's a lot higher than we expected," said Steve Brogden, deputy director of the library. The books were ruined when a two-day storm in early October dropped more than a half-inch of rain on the library, which was being re-roofed.

Because construction was under way, portions of the roof were covered only with tarps and water poured on top of library bookshelves, protected only by thin plastic sheets.

Early damage estimates by city and library officials were about $10,000. But after sorting through hundreds of damp books, library officials realized the damage was worse than initially thought, Brogden said.

The construction company's insurance will pay for the book replacement, Brogden said. The roofing project is expected to be completed during the next three weeks.

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