Open Letter To Ketchikan City
Council: Ketchikan Public Library Concerns
By Robert D. Warner
May 04, 2010
Dear Members of Ketchikan City Council: The following are basic
questions that I feel need to be answered prior to any decisions
being made on the future location of the Ketchikan Public Library.
This is an important long term decision. The community will
have to live with it for many years to come. We must not be
pressured into hasty decisions by special interest groups.
To date this process has been flawed by serveral serious and
expensive mistakes. Many folks are concerned about a series
of semi secret meetings, poor site selections, money wasted on
plans and blueprints, and the generally poor leadership of the
current library administration.
1. Who decided that the library must move from the Centennial
Building rather than the museum? Why hasn't there been a public
vote of Borough and City Residents to make this determination?
2. Considering that the current Centennial Building is well suited
for a library after modest rennovations while museum usage would
likely require a complete tear down of the building, isn't it
more costly to move the library? What are the cost estimates
of moving the library vs moving the museum?
3. Have you considered that most citizen comments to date have
been very supportive of the library's current location and very
critical of the sites recommended for the move?
4. Can the community afford increased operational costs of a
new library facility? What are the cost and staffing estimates
for operating the new facility?
5. Have you considered the future role and space needs of the
library? Many folks feel that computers are quickly making the
small and medium sized public library somewhat obsolete. We
no longer have to go to the library and page through a stack
of encyclopedias and reference books to find the information
we need. Public libraries no longer have to find space to store
little used and dated materials. We can find the information
on the world wide web from our homes or school classrooms. Young
people in school are much more skilled at this than our generations!
6. Does the impact of these changes offers potential that our
Ketchikan Public Library will actually require less space and
a smaller staff to effectively serve the community?
Thank you for seeking answers to my questions before any decision
is made on this important issue.
Robert D. Warner
Received April 30, 2010 - Published
May 04, 2010
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