Archive for Monday, October 25, 2010

Town Talk: ‘Vote no on library’ signs appear; downtown mural questioned; home sales down for September

October 25, 2010


News and notes from around town.

• The owner of a local auto repair shop is behind several Vote No on the Library signs that are popping up around the city. Micah Garber, owner of Garber Automotive, confirmed that he had a handful of the signs printed recently.

“I’ve seen a lot of the Vote Yes for the Library signs and I hadn’t seen any vote no signs,” Garber said. “I just wanted to make sure people knew it was OK to think differently than everybody else.”

Garber has printed about 20 of the signs and has given them to people who have inquired at his automotive shop. He said he wasn’t planning a major effort to print hundreds of the signs because they are costly — about $11 apiece.

“But I’m sure I could hand out another hundred if I printed them,” Garber said.

Voters will go to the polls on Nov. 2 to decide an $18 million bond issue to expand the library and its parking.

• A proposed mural for the north wall of the Lawrence Arts Center has created some controversy in the local arts community. City commissioners have indefinitely deferred a request to approve the mural. That comes after a group of local art supporters wrote a letter saying the mural was nothing more than a version of the Art Center’s logo.

John Reeves, a former chair of the Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission, wrote a letter to city commissioners asking that the mural be denied to “set a precedent that makes a clear distinction between advertising and public art.” Noted Lawrence muralist Dave Loewenstein also has asked that the mural be denied.

• September was a tough month for the Lawrence real estate industry. Home sales fell by 27 percent in September compared to September 2009, according to a new report from the Lawrence Board of Realtors. Area real estate agents made 70 sales in September 2010, down from 97 in September 2009.

For the entire year, home sales are above the 2009 totals by about 5 percent with 1,008 sales. The median sale price also is up 2.9 percent to $158,000.

A leader with the board said the slow September was expected because many homebuyers bought earlier in the year to take advantage of a federal tax credit.

What town talk are you hearing? Send me a tip at


Beelzebub 7 years, 5 months ago

Oh yes...I've been noticing a few of those "Vote No" signs. I assumed maybe the ASS&%ES who stole my "Vote Yes" sign were putting them up. So what are you against Mr. Garber...literacy or kids? Taxes?? Bull! just spent more on your obnoxious signs than you'd pay over several years in tax for the new library.

hail2oldku 7 years, 5 months ago

"you just spent more on your obnoxious signs than you'd pay over several years in tax for the new library."

Better visit that library more often so you can learn about the tax rates on businesses and commercial property.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 5 months ago

"Or, maybe Mr. Garber is using business sense"

How does that differ from just plain sense?

Nick Yoho 7 years, 5 months ago

business sense has a profit motive/mentality?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 5 months ago

Maybe so, but what sense does that make in a public library?

Food_for_Thought 7 years, 5 months ago

More than likely, you probably never went to Garber in the first place (so no loss for Mr. Garber). You just decided to make a childish comment because someone like Garber is strong enough to stand up for what he believes in. You're really going to criticize a business because the owner disagrees with you on allowing the library to irresponsibly blow $18M in bad economic times? Good business sense? Nonsense!

Is the library going to start charging admission to offset the $18M hole you're lobbying for them to put us in?

I have NO problem with the library expanding. I DO have a problem with the library trying to spend $18M to expand itself in poor economic times. Economists project that our economy should bounce back between 2 and 5 years. Our children wouldn't be hindered by waiting a few years for an expansion like this. RESPONSIBLE money management is SAVING your money in hard economic times...NOT putting yourself in a hole of debt.

You want your children to learn? Here's an idea - be a better parent. Get more directly involved with your children's learning. Use YOUR money to buy your children the educational materials. No one is preventing you from educating your children in the manner you wish. There's no reason to expect the Public to foot the $18M bill for your children's learning experience in a period of bad economic times.

Personally, whether I agree with Mr. Garber or not, I respect him greatly for standing up for what he believes in, putting his reputation and business at risk for it. You're just another anonymous screen name, which makes it all too easy for you to spout off your opinions, because there's no risk for you. You might be a childish brat for refusing to take your car in for repair to a business because the owner stands up for what he believes in, even though it disagrees with your misinformed views (not that you ever took your car to Garber anyways).

Honestly, I'll likely take my car to Garber now, not because of WHAT he believes in, but because he puts his own reputation on the line for what he believes in. What does that say about a business owner? I'd say if Mr. Garber will put his reputation on the line for his beliefs, I'm sure that carries over to his business practices, and therefore he'll stand behind his (employees') work that's performed at Garber Automotive...

My hat is off to Mr. Garber and Garber Automotive for having the gall to have those signs made. Honestly, every time I saw a "vote yes" sign, I always asked myself where the "vote no" signs were. Mr. Garber, thank you for standing up and helping to voice the opinion of the silent majority.

BlackVelvet 7 years, 5 months ago

no need to be nasty just because he may have an opinion that differs from yours.

booyalab 7 years, 5 months ago

No, he's probably against sunshine and laughter.

Mr. Garber, what do you have against puppies and rainbows?

impska 7 years, 5 months ago

You forgot kittens. He is also clearly against kittens, especially if they are cuddling puppies.

Matt Torres 7 years, 5 months ago

Oh come on. Surely we don't need to resort to logically fallacies and attacks to defend this initiative.

Bob Forer 7 years, 5 months ago

So what are you for, Beelzebub? Filling the pockets of the multi-millionaire Fritzel family who stand to make a nice profit from this project, or do you get a kick out of handing over a free parking garage to the multi-milliioinaire owners of the Eldridge Hotel......Or perhaps both?

flux 7 years, 5 months ago

Maybe Mr. Garber just believes that right now is not the best time to be spending a lot of money.

del888 7 years, 5 months ago

So let's hear your opinion, rather than just knocking someone else's. I'm voting NO. It's too expensive in these bad economic times. The money could be spent on other things.

Just_as_if 7 years, 5 months ago

Well, the LIBRARY is not for kids. Especially when you take them with you to the computers downstairs and some adults are looking at pornography, and when you say something to security, they tell you they really can't do anything, but hand you a policy booklet of what they can do, stating that if a person SMELLS bad, then they can be made to leave. But you can look at porno all you want as long as you don't smell! Like I want to give money to promote THAT!!!

ToriFreak13 7 years, 5 months ago

How did the city pay for the flyers educating utility customers to only the benefits of the library expansion? Is there not something wrong with using taxpayer $$ to persuade a vote on a public issue?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 5 months ago

Aside from the cost, what are the detriments? (the city has been quite forthcoming with the information on costs.)

ToriFreak13 7 years, 5 months ago

I was asking about the legality...not detriments. How is it that the city can use taxpayers money to promote the passing of an issue up for public vote? The homeowners that plan to vote NO are paying for the one-sided advertising being distributed to every water utility customer.

lelly 7 years, 5 months ago

The party that requests the insertion pays for it.

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

If "the party" is the public library, then the funds used are public funds, no?

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

I would say the answer is yes.

There is something wrong with that.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 5 months ago

So when does providing information about a ballot issue cross the line into "promoting" it?

I didn't read the blurb in the last water bill, so I don't really have an opinion on the text that was included.

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

That's a good question.

I would say that a balanced presentation would include the downsides as well as the benefits.

Whereas a "promotion" focuses on the benefits and minimizes the downsides.

Also, a balanced presentation might include alternatives that would be much cheaper, like the idea of an annex I've mentioned numerous times.

Another possibility could be some information about how this could be funded that doesn't include raising more money.

yourneighbor 7 years, 5 months ago

In general, "Vote Yes" committees for things like public school bonds or libraries or public transportation, use privately raised funds to pay for their signs, ads and other promotions. It is not legal to use the city or school district funds to advocate for a bond issue, etc.

Centerville 7 years, 5 months ago

LIteracy or kids? Have another beaker of Kool Aid.

Chris Ogle 7 years, 5 months ago

"So what are you against Mr. Garber...literacy or kids?"

================================= Maybe he is attempting to live within his means.... wouldn't that be a learning experience for good old Lawrence.

Family_of_3 7 years, 5 months ago

I read an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal about how other communities are handling library expansions given these tough economic times:

I think we should be considering alternative ideas, such as those discussed in this article. I will not support a tax increase to pay for a library expansion when other less costly (and equally effective) alternatives are available. It isn't about being against literacy or kids... it's about making the most of limited resources (tax dollars).

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

I think James Lund did a good job in the article of describing why this alternative idea is not equally effective. Look at that WSJ online article--Ben Franklin invented the whole idea of public libraries. They serve the purpose of creating a literate, educated populace that is necessary for democracy to survive and thrive. Opposing them is un-American.

Food_for_Thought 7 years, 5 months ago

We already have a library. Opposing the $18M expansion in hard economic times is NOT un-American. I'm quite literate, and yet, I recall RARELY using any public library. My literacy and education was a culmination of my parents, public schools, college, and my own self-education. I believe the few times I've accessed a public library (as a child) was for "How to Draw" books (art is a hobby of mine), and when teachers required me to access a public library for book reports and research papers.

Family_of_3 7 years, 5 months ago

@Thinking_Out_Load - From the article:

"It's real, and the book lockers are great," said Audra Caplan, president of the Public Library Association. "Many of us are having to reduce hours as government budgets get cut, and this enables people to get to us after hours."

The library's main branch is five miles from her house, but Ms. Baker, who is a personal care attendant for an autistic child, says it's hard to get there during business hours when the library is open. "It's difficult for me to get up there," she said of the library's main branch. "This makes it much easier to get library material."

I'm having a tough time understanding how you think the article describes this alternative idea as "not equally effective". It's clear from the article there are people who think alternative satellite libraries are not only effective, but that they offer benefits over and above that which is available by a single, centralized location.

The only negative perspective represented in the article was from a director of a library who was concerned about the elimination of librarians from the library, as if this would somehow diminish the role libraries play in the creation of a "literate, educated populace". If it's truly the "educational programs" run by libraries that create the "literate, educated populace", then run the educational programs out of the existing library and use satellite library lockers to facilitate book lending.

Just because an idea was once promoted by Ben Franklin doesn't mean the idea is still a good one.'s a good thing! And just to be clear, opposing funding of a bad idea is most certainly American.

Steve Jacob 7 years, 5 months ago

I think the hatred of the bond issue is the parking garage, and the school bond issue that somehow paid for two football fields.

haggisgirl 7 years, 5 months ago

Am I missing something? What's wrong with having a "version of the Arts Center Logo" ON the Arts Center wall?

ataxpayer 7 years, 5 months ago

It is time that our city, state, and federal governments learn to prioritize. Expanding the library may be politically correct, but it is financially stupid. We are in a major recession, the closest thing to a depression we have had in most of our life times. We also have a crushing debt, bigger than any in our history. Regardless of who you want to blame for our present situation reality is still reality we have to stop spending. When our economy is doing a lot better, and when our debts are paid down to a reasonable level, I would support improving the library, but not now.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

It's not that simple. The library offers our community subscriptions to many online databases that no one of us could access on our own. It has a professional and trained staff that helps patrons like you and me find the information we want or need. It sponsors computer classes to help members of the community develop computer literacy. It provides reference materials, audio materials, videos, geneological research resources, an entire room with historical documents related to Douglas County, interlibrary loan services, adult and childrens programs, etc.

"Google it," although a pithy and (hopefully) cathartic response, is also simplistic and untenable. The googler must be able to differentiate among the tens of thousands of responses to the googled keyword to identify which are relevant, which are not, and more importantly which provide accurate information and which do not. It assumes the individual has internet access, which even in 2010 is by no stretch a reasonable assumption. It assumes the individual has a computer (the last number I read was that 20% of the U.S. population did not) and internet access (the last number I read was 25% did not).

A public library is a shared resource by which all of us have access to more items held by the library than any of us would have individually. It is a valuable community resource, part of the urban infrastructure (sorry, kernal), and a direct contributor to the quality of life a community enjoys.

kernal 7 years, 5 months ago

I would love to have an updated and expanded library and a big new recreation complex, but first things first. Some of us have forgotten our infrastructure needs to be updated as well. We still have sewers that are one hundred years old, give or take ten to twenty years; roads and sidewalks that still need repair (that will always be on ongoing process); water lines that are decades old and past due for replacement; buildings downtown that are holding each other up and some are crumbling, if you look closely and there are still areas in Lawrence having drainage problems that need to be addressed.

Instead of expanding the library, what about a bookmobile. The Topeka Library used to have that and it was really handy. You can request books and they have them for you the next week.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

The Library is part of the community's infrastructure.

Lana Christie-Hayes 7 years, 5 months ago

I totally agree with spending the money on much needed repairs, and I am not entirely against expanding the library. However, I believe there needs to be a library built on the southwest side of town. It doesn't have to be anything real big, but the location of the current library in conjunction with the direction that Lawrence has grown makes it difficult for a good many of those "kids seeking better education" to access! Expanding the library at it's current location just seems idiotic to me and a waste of tax dollars!

alm77 7 years, 5 months ago

On Rhode Island Street there is a sign made out of wood scraps that says "Vote no libarry". Funniest thing I've seen in a while.

Kernal, I agree. I'd probably vote for $18 million for new roads, the library however, maybe not.

pace 7 years, 5 months ago

good for Mr.Garber, "I hadn’t seen any vote no signs,” Garber said. “I just wanted to make sure people knew it was OK to think differently than everybody else." He may not be very savvy about pr but he is putting his message out. He should do what he thinks if right for his community, He is, in my eyes, required to stand up and be counted. It makes a healthier community. I am for the library but I would never assume someone who wants a no vote was against literacy or even libraries. They might have good reason and good argument. We often have different choices to make and different reasons to make choices. I personally don't need the help to understand that it is ok to think differently than everybody else but if someone gets that message from a Vote No sign, I am amazed. I would just read it as someone who wanted people to vote no on the bond issue. I would encourage people to vote yes, and I would further insist that this is the worst time not to support education in general.

volunteer 7 years, 5 months ago

Lawrence has a caring and literate voter base, so I expect a close vote despite the Recession.

In Topeka, however, when its library bond issue was passed, the voters simply gave its library too dang much money. Approved the first bond issue put forward, which had all the bells and whistles, instead of demanding and waiting for a smaller bond issue. For example, a library coffee shop soon appeared, which was a surprise to many of Topeka's voters (and probably annoyed the heck out of owners of the privately held tax-paying coffee shops).

And a few years ago Topeka's library honchos decided the salaries were too inadequate for employees in such a fine they budgeted ZERO for new acquisitions in order to create budget room for Topeka's staff to meet the NATIONAL average of librarian salaries. (mid fifties plus benefits; this is the average for more than one hundred employees)

Not sayin' that would happen to Lawrence if the public voted YES...but it makes me uneasy how vague the "pro" side has been on what exactly the new money would provide.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

And Topeka's library is far more suitable, usable, community-friendly, and better-stocked than ours. Plus the cafe there is one of the best-kept restaurant secrets in NE Kansas (although I should admit that Doug Petrie is a close friend of mine, so I'm not entirely unbiased). And oh! the shame that Topeka must feel in actually paying its staff an appropriate salary!! Why, you start paying librarians what they're worth and next thing you know, everyone else will want the same thing!

librarian 7 years, 5 months ago

The cafe in the Topeka library is privated owned and not funded by tax dollars.

Bob Forer 7 years, 5 months ago

Why do repuklicans and demokrats hate kids?

Don Whiteley 7 years, 5 months ago

Why do Democrats hate kids? I haven't seen you saying anything about the drastic cuts being made to education across the nation, but here you are supporting $18 million for a library enhancment. Don't you think maybe that money could be better spent elsewhere?

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

Most Democrats support properly funding the educational system - it's Republicans who talk about changing the formula, spending freezes, not raising taxes, etc.

kansasmutt 7 years, 5 months ago

With library usage down 60% over the last 10 years, 18 million $$$$ might be hard to choke down. When you toss that tax on top of the new sales tax and the deflation we are having and the inflation of cost`s It is not a good time to add onto the library.

I am closing the doors of my business in December due to the stupid high taxes, utility rates and smoking ban cutting business by 40% starting the day it went into law. Many years of paying sales tax and other high taxes will come to an end Dec 31st and it saddens me to have to do it. Kansas has just become a very business unfriendly sate and will loose yet more sales tax from us.

Our overhead has gone up almost 200% ( fixed ) in the past 18 months like all businesses have seen, but when you throw in the no smoking, and 1% sales tax, that was the straw that broke our back. People are shopping Missouri now and they can smoke and save a dollar on every hundred dollars they spend. When your doing multi thousand dollar jobs that extra 1% sends them packing.

Thank you Westar Energy, Douglas County, State of Kansas, AT&T , and Anti Smokers, you just cost the state alot more tax revenue and killed a thriving growing business.

Now you do gooders can take up the slack and pay my taxes i used to pay, plus your higher taxes as well, are ya happy now ??????

1 of 7 local businesses that will be closing Dec of 2010 .

kansasmutt 7 years, 5 months ago

They are friends and i will let them anounce it. I can`t let the bag out of the hat . I have to honor there wishes.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 5 months ago

"With library usage down 60% over the last 10 years,"

Huh? Certainly not in Lawrence.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

Usage down 60%? That's not the statistic that I've seen; I've actually seen stats that usage has been increasing the last few years.

pace 7 years, 5 months ago

I think those were personal stats, just his/her family doesn't go to the library anymore.. Mine spend a lot of time in the library. My family stats seem unnaturally high but that kid of mine wants to eat the world, do things, be someone, she is hungry for information, education and good work.
But his/her family might be busy watching a lot of sports. Kids need to be herded, I herded mine to a library, I admit they drug me to film festivals, art shows, and ice cream parlors.
This town would benefit from a modern library, a good facility, a variety of different resources available, up to date non-commercial access to information.. A lot of kids need to find out stuff, they have things to do. Some don't Some don't see a need for a good library, Some kids are blessed with quality tv time. .

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

More computers (which are often used at the library to play games), more meeting space, and more parking are the items that are being pushed as to why we need this expansion.

I have heard nothing about expanded collections or increased educational opportunities.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

I don't think the point is what people are using the computers for--it is that there is a demand for the computers. I don't think it matters what patrons do with the time they are alloted on the computers. Why do you care what they are doing? I doubt you would use the same condescending tone if you thought people were most often using their library privileges to check out Nancy Drew novels.

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

I think it absolutely matters, if we are being asked to approve a tax increase to expand the library.

If more people want to use the computers to play games, I don't want to pay higher taxes to make that happen.

Similarly, I don't want to pay $18 million (as a community) to provide more meeting space and parking.

If the main focus of this expansion were to expand the collection and provide more educational opportunities, it might be different.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

Do you also want approval as to what books, CDs, or videos patrons check out, jafs? Or approval of what they use them for? I don't think you mean to be as paternalistic as this sounds.

kansasmutt 7 years, 5 months ago

Most usage is for the computers , not to read the books. The readership is down 60% computer usage is up as much as 400% in some libraries.

Food_for_Thought 7 years, 5 months ago

Most people these days use the internet to educate themselves, children and adults alike. Why drive all the way to the library, when you can simply Google, point, click, and learn?

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

I would love to see your statistics.

The LPL has been publishing statistics showing increased checkouts for some time now.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

I'm with jafs. I'd like to know the source for these statistics.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

OK, here's the link to the library's usage page: In 2009 1,364,267 discrete items were checked out. You're saying that in 1999 there were 3,410,667 items checked out?

I believe that you've confused some statistics you read somewhere along the line.

amrose42683 7 years, 5 months ago

Same here, I've never seen that stat and actually heard that usage has increased. It's free fun for our kids during 'this tough economic climate' so we've definitely made a friend of the library and go once or twice a week.

GUMnNUTS 7 years, 5 months ago

I will just have to assume that the business in question has to be a bar for the smoking ban to have hurt that much

puddleglum 7 years, 5 months ago

so people are in missouri and they are smoking and shopping at the same time?

sounds like missouri you betcha

beatrice 7 years, 5 months ago

Vot No on the Liberry.

Actually, since I no longer live in Lawrence, I don't have a dog in this fight. I love a good library, but these are tough times. Not exactly the time to spend when it isn't absolutely necessary.

I'm all for literacy and reading and books and stuff, but in this age of remote access to virtually everything, is money spent on bricks and mortar to expand the building really the best use of the money? I don't think it would be a bad thing to see money going to things like Kindles that can be rented or borrowed, subscriptions to data bases for extensive research that can be accessed from home, and other high-tech solutions that now cost far less than $18 million to expand a building while still helping with literacy and reading and "books" and stuff.

Bill Lee 7 years, 5 months ago

It appears the LJW still needs a copy editor. One of the 2010s in the article should be 2009.

wmathews 7 years, 5 months ago

Looks like someone fixed this error. Thanks for letting us know!

Lana Christie-Hayes 7 years, 5 months ago

I am not entirely against expanding the library. However, I believe there needs to be a library built on the southwest side of town. It doesn't have to be anything real big, but the location of the current library in conjunction with the direction that Lawrence has grown over these last 20-30 years makes it difficult for a good many of those "kids seeking better education" to access! Expanding the library at it's current location just seems idiotic to me and a waste of tax dollars! Expand...elsewhere in the community !

Food_for_Thought 7 years, 5 months ago

I have to agree with this. As our city expands outward, spending $18M to make a library "Mecca" in traffic-congested, space-restricted area is just impractical. Building a second library for a growing city would make more sense. While I'm against spending $18M on a library expansion in bad economic times, I would likely be more receptive to the building of a SECOND library somewhere on the west end of Lawrence...

SpeedRacer 7 years, 5 months ago

I have lived here 30 years, and have just shook my head every time the City makes a bad decision or raised taxes to fund some unnecessary project. I now pay more taxes here than I paid in Los Angeles. It is clear that the structure of our city government will never create an atmosphere for responsible governing. I am currently looking to take up residency elsewhere while housing prices are still low.

ConcernedCynic 7 years, 5 months ago

I hope you are talking tax rate. Otherwise, I would think that after 30 years you would be paying more taxes.

7texdude 7 years, 5 months ago

The parking garage is, why I'll vote no. I love our library, but $18 million is way too much. And, no, I am not a Republican, but this is ridiculous. The roads are horrible, but we want to focus on $18 million for a library with a parking garage that is a waste of money.

Toss out the parking garage and I'd vote yes. Since it is there, no way. This sounds like one of those DC pork additions.

d_prowess 7 years, 5 months ago

So you are ok with spending $14 million on the library? I believe the parking is only about $4 million.

Kornphlake 7 years, 5 months ago

Well that's one place less I'll be taking my business to. Vote no for Garber Automotive by spending your money elsewhere.

kansasmutt 7 years, 5 months ago

Garbers Shop is a great shop. I would like to invite everyone to keep them in mind next time you need service on your car or truck. Another small business working for the people. Keep up the great service guys.

I had a service done by them once and they did an awesome job and my car came back CLEAN ...

Don Whiteley 7 years, 5 months ago

Voting "No" on the library bond is neither anti-social nor anti-patriotic, which many people are tying to make it sound. In times of a down economy and below normal tax receipts, when we are cutting government services across the board, including drastic cuts to eductation, I cannot support spending $18 million on an enhancement to our library. There are simply too many other things right now that $18 million would go a long way to fix.

Matthew Herbert 7 years, 5 months ago

For being such a good businessman, he sure did a poor job of selecting a printer. $11 for a yard sign? Wow......should have shopped around. I've never paid over $5.

Kontum1972 7 years, 5 months ago

i printed up some VOTE: "MAYBE".... signs..they were stolen by "Al Queida"...and i saw a UFO this morning in the eastern sky....pretty weird...

friendlyjhawk 7 years, 5 months ago

This is not the time to vote YES for the expenditure of $18 million for anything.

Kontum1972 7 years, 5 months ago

a wide black marker and a piece of scrap plastic makes a inexpensive sign....

wysiwyg69 7 years, 5 months ago

The people that are bashing Mr. Garber for his opinion on the bond for the library need to pull their head out of the sand or what ever is is buried in and realize that the financial times that families and businesses are in , we do not need more unnecessary taxes. Mr . Garber, if you read these comments I am sure that you will see you are in the majority..................................... !!!!!!! VOTE NO !!!!!! on the Library bond issue.

kernal 7 years, 5 months ago

Thinking_Out_Loud says " The library is part of the community's infrastructure". TOT, it is up to a point, but when I say infrastructure, I'm referring to the basic infrastructure, or if you will, the basic framework that keeps a community running, such as sewer and water systems, roads and the like. Libraries are extraneous to the infrastructure.

Thinking_Out_Loud 7 years, 5 months ago

Ah, gottit. By "infrastructure" you mean whatever you want to talk about, rather than what the rest of the world means by "infrastructure." Sorry; my bad.

jafs 7 years, 5 months ago

I don't count a library as part of our infrastructure either.

Streets, public utilities, etc. are how I understand that term.

Brandon Devlin 7 years, 5 months ago

My favorite was the one my wife saw the other day that said "Say "No" to the Libarry." Fantastic! Maybe that person should spend a little more time there. . .

Sue McDaniel 7 years, 5 months ago

I will not vote YES and I love kids, reading, the library, etc. It is just not the right time to spend money on anything. Perhaps they could get donations from the citizens that are employed, or have a surplus in their budget they would like to donate.....

Nikki May 7 years, 5 months ago

I consider myself a liberal. I also have kids, work with kids, and love reading. I'm voting NO on the library. All the reasons have been stated. I don't know why Garber was willing to pay more for signs than his family would pay in taxes (allegedly, I don't know what his house's property tax is), but it was his CHOICE. We can all individually make a choice to donate to a building fund. I'd be more willing to do that than put this burden on everyone when there are definitely those of us that are worried about other things. Yes, I know the library is crowded on certain occasions, like the summer and spring break programs for the kids.

But, ultimately I have to agree with those that said try again for a better bond issue, one that makes more sense. While I'm an East-sider, and my kids can't walk to the library where it is, I do also support the thought of a smaller satellite on the west side. We wouldn't need the garage. There are buildings that have storefronts empty.

And ultimately, those kids that are 5 and up have their school libraries. So, it's not really the kids that people are against. It's just wasteful spending that can be done in more creative ways. I would urge people to vote NO, meaning more "Not right now, not like this."

There's better ways to do it. Several have been listed in the last few weeks.

beatrice 7 years, 5 months ago

My thought was, it is his money so he can spend it as he wishes.

Kontum1972 7 years, 5 months ago

most kids go online when they have to do research for school projects..what is the visitation ratio @ the Pub Lib.?..............anyone?

formerlyanonymous 7 years, 5 months ago

Interesting question, Kontum. We take our kids to the library about once a week. Each time we've gone, most of the computers in the kids' room are open. The ones that I see being used are usually used to play games. I occasionally see a kid looking at the catalog.

I am grateful that they do offer computers in the kids' room. We don't allow our older children into the basement of the library because of the amount of porn that is viewed by patrons down there.

I think the better argument for more computers is to keep certification, not to allow stinky bums to watch x-rated material. Still, I'm voting no on the library, not because I don't support kids or books, but because I think that this plan is too expensive. I'd rather see a satellite locations open up.

kansasredlegs 7 years, 5 months ago

Could the Vote Yes folks get the City to come over and fix the ever expanding hole in my street. I'd do it myself, but I'm sure I'd get a nasty letter from Public Works advising that I didn't do it to its technical specifications along with the repair bill for my repair job for a hole it won't fix.

Remember it's not a vote against the library, but a vote against an $18M expansion.

SpeedRacer 7 years, 5 months ago

Did anyone notice that one of the ballot measures is a Constitutional Amendment removing the restrictions on the mentally ill to vote? Clearly, this hasn't been enforced for a while.

Goodrick2 7 years, 5 months ago

The smartest thing to do is vote NO for the library and take your car to Garber Automotive, Mr.Garber and his workers are great people that will take good care of your stuff.

denak 7 years, 5 months ago

Sadly, I am probably going to vote no simply because the things that they are spending money on aren't imperative for a good functional library. Yes, parking is a hassle (sometimes), but do we really need a parking garage with three levels. Do, we really need a drive through window? Is it really that much of a hassle for most of the patrons to get out of their car and walk into the library? Do we really need 9 meeting rooms and 6 reading rooms??? Do we really need 100 more computers?

There is all this stuff they want to build for the library but I'm haven't seen one thing being said about purchasing more BOOKS. Go the the history section, the majority of books are old. And the selection is limited. Same with the science section. Same with the law section.

I would be more willing to vote for the 18 million dollar expansion if I knew the library staff was going to go through their shelves and purge any book that is more than 5 years old and then use even 1 million of that money to buy books that had the most updated science, history, legal, etc information possible.

What good is a big, pretty library if the books inside aren't worth reading???


kernal 7 years, 5 months ago

Dena, I agree with most of what you said except for purging books over five years old. There are many older history, cultural, poly-sci related books and fiction over five years old and well worth keeping.

KansasPerson 7 years, 5 months ago

Dena, I'm with you except for the "five years" part. I can't agree that it's a good idea to jettison anything that wasn't written after 2005! That would be a huge mistake. However, I am really leaning towards a "no" vote because, no matter how I ask, I cannot get an answer on "how much of this money will go towards expanding the collection." A vague "Well, of course some of that money will go towards that" is NOT going to cut it. I don't agree that a library's first needs are a bigger, prettier children's room, a hundred more computers, and a big parking garage.

pace 7 years, 5 months ago

I think there is a need for bigger better facility, the existing parking lot serves the existing facility on most days. It would not serve the parking needs for the future. Yes on children's space, yes on more computers, and a big yes on not committing to a 2010 list, Data, information, literature is going through an electronic revolution. The library will be a resource for families, young students, kids to access this. Mega data floods are coming your kids way, The new library will be an ark and a rudder.
PS. People who leave their kid's research and learning skills to google are guilty of neglect. Google is a commercial search engine, yes it is handy but not the hand I want holding my kids hand when as they cross the information highway.

budwhysir 7 years, 5 months ago

Just remember a vote for yes is a vote for no until yes means no and no means yes.

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