New library? Community Center? Resource center? Are you confused about what might happen downtown? The Board of Supervisors will be discussing this on Thursday, March 7, at 6:00 p.m. at the Courthouse.
Members of the library board and community have been working hard to make all of those things a reality. Why? Because the library is too small for much besides book and DVD storage. If it were bigger, there would be room for people who want to learn something in a class, learn how to use computers, get training for a job or help with job applications; have a meeting of a work staff or a club.
Children would have a place for activities and story time. If there were a private space, someone could take an online exam or meet with a counselor. If you need or want to work from home and but have poor internet service, a bigger building would give you a place to bring your computer and be productive.
A larger space could also mean the coffee is on and you could meet a friend or have a nice place to read or wait for someone, power up your cellphone or computer or just get good internet service. Teens would find a place to hang out with friends and watch videos or play games. It would, therefore. be a community center with resources and a library. There are plans, too, for a community kitchen for meals for seniors or a club meeting or to put up home-grown produce to sell or put on your pantry shelf. Cooking classes could also be an option.
Tourism has a home at the library now with a wall eighteen inches wide for brochures and maps. If tourism grows, it will bring in visitors and their money to the county. Having a better presence in the Resource Center for tourism will only help with making the county an inviting place. Promoting tourism is a proven economic success in the surrounding counties.
The idea is to have an Economic Development Director to manage the building and a librarian to take care of the library. Yes, this costs money, and the County Supervisors are concerned about how to pay not only for the building, but the continuing costs of running it. While the on-going fundraising for the building is making a strong beginning, there is a Community Development Block Grant for $700,000 that would make a big difference in the bottom line. The application deadline is in March and must be applied for by the county. Everyone is urged to come to the Courthouse on Thursday, March 7, at 6:00 p.m. when the Board of Supervisors will be discussing this big initiative.
Submitted by Martha Dillard