Letters to the Editor
To the editor:
I believe Representative Tony Brown’s attempt to cut the legislative budget as outlined in his “legislative update,” published in the Feb. 4 issue of the Baldwin City Signal is right “on track.”
It seems that most Governmental Entities (local, state and federal) believe their budgets are “sacred” and can't possibly be cut without doing irreparable damage to the economy. I believe the federal government currently employs in excess of 2 million people in this country and has been successful in maintaining, and (in many cases) increasing the number of federal employees. Every time our president proposes a new method for improving the current economy, he creates a new “committee” or group of some kind that adds even more employees to the government payroll, thereby, adding to the existing economic problems.
Many of us have been negatively impacted by the downturn in the U. S. economy - I believe it's time the government and municipalities share some of the burden!
Quality-of-life sales tax
To the editor:
Before my husband and I bought a home and moved to Baldwin City seven years ago, we stopped by the library. We found a well-stocked facility with a friendly, welcoming staff who answered our questions, including locations of homes for sale. Talk about full service. We left with a positive impression, feeling that our patron needs would be in good hands.
After volunteering at the library for six years and serving on the library board for five years, I know that the library is special. Headed by a dedicated director who supervises a knowledgeable staff and a group of loyal volunteers, the library offers services including up-to-date technology and online access to 30-plus other libraries in the Nexpress consortium. Patron requests are filled promptly and include bestsellers, inter-library loans, current magazines and movies on CD. The programs range from a story hour for young children, a summer reading program for children and adults to scheduling appointments with AARP to provide tax-filing help for Baldwin City citizens. Wireless access is provided and several computers are available for public use. A large Kansas section offers local history and genealogical search help is available by request. A large activity room is booked regularly for meetings, birthday parties, shows and craft work days.
In addition to the staff, a very active Friends of the Library volunteer group sponsors fundraisers and cultural activities throughout the year which showcase the library and invite others in Baldwin City to get involved. Through their generous donations, the library is able to purchase out-of-budget items. A cohesive and positive board of trustees sets policy and enforces it responsibly. The library has almost everything it needs except space. It is so crowded that the staff jokes that they have to discard a book for every new one purchased.
In these difficult economic times, I am aware of the pressures facing our city. I realize that a solid infrastructure is necessary and vital. My husband and I support the Baldwin City Recreation Commission and attend many events, especially the elderberry functions. While we would surely enjoy city-wide walking trails, the library is literally and figuratively the center of Baldwin City. Those of us who depend on the library and voted for the quality-of-life sales tax expected that part of those funds were to be used for library expansion.
Thank you for the opportunity to express my opinion.
Baldwin City Public Library Board of Trustees
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