RI found Barbara Clark's letter very interesting and thought provoking.
Regarding Ms. Clark's letter, what are the three models under consideration for consolidation? Can we see them in their entirety? Why can't the U-B print them as a disinterested third party?
If the RLD and the city pay into the annexation at the exact same rate, then the city residents have to start paying a library tax as the RLD residents presently pay. Does she mean to add all RLD residents and all city residents together and then they would be taxed their share of the operating expenses for all libraries? What about the people who do not own land? What about the people in College Place having their own library?
She stated only one of the proposals gives RLD residents seats on the library board. Why only one? Why not one board member for each library area? The RLD is continuing with a second urban library plan that was initiated a long time ago, and funds were collected and set aside for that purpose. What is wrong with that?
I have also been informed that the city library cards purchased by RLD residents will expire Dec. 31 and no new cards will be available to these residents by the city. Does this show good intent to work together?
Many issues and coordination have to be worked out before an annexation can happen. Neither side should be forced into an annexation at this time. I agree annexation would be good for both parties, but not until all issues are addressed and corrected. Maybe this should be done by a separate committee made up of residents of each library area of the RLD and the city and not any directors, Council members, employees, or any other RLD or city officials. Give the voice back to the people. Let the residents fix it.
In the meantime, let the RLD and the city operate their own libraries with the obviously qualified and dedicated employees, directors they have.
The RLD residents like their directors and the job they have been doing. I ask the county commissioners to leave them alone. Let them continue doing the excellent job the residents enjoy.
I have talked to many of my fellow RLD residents and they are in agreement with this letter and its statements and questions.