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The Detroit Public Library ousted its executive director Tuesday, amid fears of worsening finances and whiplash from a year of scandals over lavish spending and bungled budgets.
Board members placed Jo Anne Mondowney on paid administrative leave until her $135,000 contract expires Aug. 24. The final straw for some commissioners was fears she hadn't kept the board "up to date" on a system "facing a financial catastrophe," said commission chairman Jonathan Kinloch.
Are Public Libraries "Permanently F***ed?" Maybe Not
You probably won't learn much from this one, but that headline was too good to pass up.
"Perhaps the disgruntled librarians are hiding out in some sub-basement, smoking cigarettes and fidgeting with their switchblades," she says. "Maybe later they'll have a dance-off. Maybe librarians are simply the most optimistic people on the planet. I leave it for a better person than me to decide."
(Via the great and powerful librarystuff.net)
State paid $22K each for Internet routers
The state of West Virginia is using $24 million in federal economic stimulus money to put high-powered Internet computer routers in small libraries, elementary schools and health clinics, even though the pricey equipment is designed to serve major research universities, medical centers and large corporations, a Gazette-Mail investigation has found.
The state purchased 1,064 routers two years ago, after receiving a $126 million federal stimulus grant to expand high-speed Internet across West Virginia.
Vermont resident hopes to start private library
That left Dolly F.H. Stevens, who said she was the head of the library, in an interesting dilemma. The long-time Athens resident had asked friends and acquaintances to donate their unwanted books in an effort to help the 117-year-old library thrive. Following the town's vote on March 6, Stevens attempted to give the volumes back to their original owners but it didn't work.
"They just donated them back," she said in a telephone interview, adding that she had initially received 4,000 books, which have been stored in the closed Athens Elementary School building. She said after Town Meeting that she was ending her fight to save the public library.
Dogs make good listeners at local libraries
Kids can overcome their reading fears with the help of Dwayne the library dog. Dwayne visits the Bella Vista Library for scheduled appointments for children to read to him and also for monthly story times. The 3-year-old therapy dog is a yellow Labrador and golden retriever mix, owner Faye Pyatt of Bella Vista said.
Blind patrons sue Philadelphia Free Library over Nook e-Readers
With the assistance of the National Federation of the Blind, four blind patrons of the Free Library of Philadelphia—Denice Brown, Karen Comorato, Patricia Grebloski, and Antoinette Whaley—have filed suit (case number: 12-2373) against the library because they cannot access one of the library’s programs for which they are eligible. The Free Library of Philadelphia has instituted and announced plans to expand a program in which free NOOK Simple Touch e-readers, which are manufactured and sold by Barnes & Noble, are loaned to patrons over the age of fifty. Unlike some other portable e-readers that use text-to-speech technology and/or Braille to allow blind people to read e-books, the NOOK devices are completely inaccessible to patrons who are blind. The library’s conduct violates Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Brevard libraries pull erotic best-seller 'Fifty Shades of Grey'
The erotic “Fifty Shades of Grey” apparently is too blue for the Brevard County Public Libraries system.
The wildly popular first installment of a titillating trilogy by British author E.L. James, “Fifty Shades” is parked atop every best-seller list in the country, from Amazon to the New York Times.
But the sadomasochistic saga won’t be found any longer on Space Coast library shelves. All of a “handful” of copies were removed from circulation earlier this week.
“It’s quite simple — it doesn’t meet our selection criteria,” said Cathy Schweinsberg, library services director.
Annealing the Library
What if a public library could fund a blogger of urban architecture to cover in detail all proceedings of the city planning department? What if it could fund a local historian to write an open-access history of the town? What if school libraries could fund teachers to develop open-access courseware? What if libraries could buy the digital rights of copyrighted works and set them free? What if the funds were available right now?
“We try to do much more with less, but we try not to let it affect the customers,” Miller said. “We cut back on hours, the staff, and the resources we purchase. We recently lost access to several million dollars worth of electronic data bases that were available to libraries statewide, but we have to decide what is more important – providing some things people want or keeping the doors open.”
Sacramento Public Library whistleblower settles suit for $343,000
The clerk who blew the whistle on a Sacramento Public Library Authority kickback scheme that sent three people to prison settled her retaliation lawsuit against the agency for $343,000, it was disclosed Monday.