Public Libraries

This year, give thanks for public libraries

Here's A Nice One on letter-writing campaign organized by the Florida Library Association. Library users and supporters are urged to write Governor Bush to urge his support for providing state funds for libraries. Good Stuff!

Self-service library debuts in Singapore

From the Straights Times:

When Sengkang Community Library opens on Dec 1 at the Compass Point Shopping Centre, it will have no service counters. Users will also have a hard job trying to spot a librarian, because just one will be holding the fort at this self-service library, which is meant to serve about 61,000 residents . . .

The only other full-time employee will be a security guard. But volunteers will help run the place. Clients who need help navigating the 1,800 sq m facility with its 120,000 books, magazines and newspapers must pick up the phone and call a \'cybrarian\' based at the Tampines library . . .

Complete article.

Making a library feel like home

From Inside Toronto:

Architect Bruce Stratton says he took into account the local community\'s ideas and suggestions when creating initial floor plans for Runnymede Library\'s expansion, which were revealed at a public consultation meeting last week.

Stratton\'s goal is to provide a highly functional library, but at the same time one that\'s comfortable. Reiterating an earlier comment by Anne Bailey, Toronto Public Library\'s south region director at the meeting Thursday evening, he said a \"home away from home captures the feeling of what I\'d like to obtain.\"

Area residents have shared their feelings and offered their input since the first public meeting in September. They would like to see the library\'s front entrance maintained while keeping the integrity of the building. Access is a priority - for everyone. Right now the library is a little claustrophobic.

Complete article.

Another Woman jailed for overdue library book

A Woman In Indiana learned the hard way that it's important to return library books on time.
She checked out "Danforth's Obstetrics & Gynecology" from the New Albany-Floyd County Public Library on Feb. 5, 2001. She returned the book. But because she did not pay her late fee or get a receipt _ nor show up in court _ a bench warrant was issued for her arrest.
Prosecutors later dismissed the theft charge after King obtained a statement from the library showing that that she had returned the book and paid a $16.30 late fee.

Public libraries \'underappreciated\'

Here\'s One from The Washington Times that expands on the chronic problems in the D.C. public library system noted first in This One
Library officials said there is little they can do to maintain the same level of service as their costs increase and their annual budgets decrease. Recently, the library system\'s $26 million budget was cut by $587,000; a cut of $2 million had been planned.

\"The residents out there that use the libraries are disgusted,\" Mr. Mendelson said. \"It is good that we haven\'t cut the library funding as drastically as we have other programs, but the other side is that we haven\'t increased funding either. These libraries get surprisingly good use and little attention.\"

West Virginia librarians fight for their libraries

Steve Fesenmaier writes \"
Forget Shhhh!
West Virginia Libraries to Make Some Noise

West Virginia Children need books. West Virginia Children need to read. West Virginia Children who read succeed…and that’s why West Virginia Libraries are making some noise. As a part of National Children’s Book Week, November 18 – 24, library advocates from around the state will gather in Charleston on Monday, November 18
for a rally to be held on the Capitol steps from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Attempt to dissolve WA county libraries defeated

Voters have defeated an effort by right-wing \"tax activists\" to dissolve a Washington county\'s library system:

A referendum calling for the disbanding of the Stevens County Rural Library District, WA, was crushed by voters in the November 5 elections. system, was defeated by a vote of 5,282 to 2,822 . . .Stevens County Director Regan Robinson thanked the community for its support as well as the media for countering the misinformation being supplied to the public by the anti-library group.

Complete article from Library Journal.

Stevens County (WA) Libraries Saved

Following up on This One, A push to dissolve the Stevens County Rural Library District fell 2-to-1. John Norling worked to get Proposition 1 on the ballot but said he\'s finished with the effort.

\"The voters have spoken,\" he said. \"Maybe we didn\'t get our message across, or maybe voters didn\'t like our message. It\'s a moot point now. We\'re not going to pursue anything more.\"

The network of seven libraries opened in 1998, paid for with a 50-cent tax on every $1,000 of assessed property value. Norling believes the way the library system is administered — by unelected volunteers — and funded is unfair.

\"This wasn\'t about books,\" he said, \"this was about unequal taxes.\"
From The Seattle Times.

Should Minneapolis library trade a name for $15 million?

The Star Tribune raises the interesting question Should Minneapolis library trade a name for $15 million?
The immediate, if informal, reaction was a resounding yes. Some trustees said they\'d even sell the name for less.
Former Library Director Mary Lawson advised that a donor hold intellectual principles consistent with a library and that any donor be a person, not a corporation.
So much for the \"Target Library\", but that leaves it open for the \"Blake Carver Library\", anyone want to chip in with me?

Artists to use variety of materials to adorn library wall

SomeOne pointed us to This Story on the the Del Mar Library Wall Beautification Project, recently approved by the city\'s Design Review Board. People have been coming with, animal bones, broken dishes, bricks by the dozen, sink valves, rusty horseshoes and railroad spikes.
The pieces will be used to turn the concrete wall in front of the library into a work of art – a mixed-media mosaic. The art form can be traced back to fountains and furniture from the ancient lands of Pompeii and Mesopotamia.

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