Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Setting the record straight - REVISED

I request your indulgence in hearing my retraction on a couple of things that I said in my earlier post. A Maryville Library Committee member called me and told me that the article and comments came from the Library Committee and some general members of the Maryville community so I have rewritten my comments taking out the Village Officials. I offer my apologies to them if I misrepresented their views.
If you were not aware, our Library (Mississippi Valley PLD) and our neighbor the Maryville Community Library will be on the ballot in March. Our Library will be asking to expand our District and the Maryville Library to establish a library where there isn't one now. Since we are an established library, we have been trying to help Maryville Library and its members by giving them support in whatever fashion they may need. We have given their members all the same service as our own members. We have entered their information into our databases and we have worked hand in hand with their staff in trying to build a quality library. I would say that as two neighboring libraries we are working together for the best of our communities.

Yet, in the last month some misinformation has been given to the Maryville community. It has been reported that if the citizens of Maryville do not vote for the Maryville Community Library that our Library (MVPLD) will come in and annex them anyway without their consent and will charge them more for a library card. This scare tactic is not true!

There has been discussion that if the Maryville Community Library referendum does not pass that Maryville should refuse to work cooperatively with our Library (MVPLD) and instead approach the TriTownship Library in Troy for further service for no other reason than a misconceived and aged feud between the Collinsville and Maryville communities. This is sad!

In the last 10 years that I have served as Director at Mississippi Valley Library District (then called the Collinsville Memorial Public Library), I have worked consistently to provide service for the Maryville community and have developed programs such as free library cards for students with the cooperation of Unit 10. We have a Homebound Service that delivers library materials to Maryville residents and we are proud of our efforts to be sure that anyone who walks through our doors or calls is treated with the same respect.

This could be a new dawn - One of cooperation and respect for each other. I am asking that Collinsville and Maryville residents treat the idea of library service with a fair and fresh attitude, to view the future with a new optimism and to relate that to your Village and City Officials. I have faith that our communities can work together in a positive way for a promising future in all matters.

In summary for the Maryville Community Library, a 'yes' vote means Maryville will have a library and there will be a library tax with the full privileges of being part of the Illinois Library Service. A 'no' vote means Maryville will not have a library, will not have a library tax, will not be a part of any privileges provided by Illinois Library Service and will leave an uncertainty of the future of library service in that area.

Vote on March 21st.