To the editor:
As a retired employee of the Lawrence Public Library, I have been following all reports of the library expansion with much interest. The report in the Sunday, Oct. 31, issue of the Journal-World left me concerned about the answer to the question concerning taxpayers throughout the county not funding the library, but yet getting free use of the Lawrence Public Library. The answer implied that county residents do not pay library taxes.
As a former governor’s appointee and former board member of the North East Kansas Library System, be assured that Douglas County residents outside of Lawrence do indeed pay library taxes. Our taxes go to the NEKL System, which supports all libraries in northeast Kansas except the Topeka-Shawnee County Library. This support certainly does include the Lawrence Public Library. Support services to these libraries include grants, technical aid, interlibrary loan, educational services and much, much more.
It would take a vote of all Douglas County residents to become a countywide library system, much like the Topeka-Shawnee County Library. This would mean that the Lawrence Public Library would no longer receive the services of NEKL. By the way, the NEKL office is on Sixth Street in Lawrence, and residents outside of Lawrence did not vote in the library expansion referendum.