Dear Mr. Richman
On behalf of the Library Action Committee, please accept our thanks for serving on the panel for the third Library Forum, Saturday, January 25, 2014. The Committee had already benefitted greatly from the analyses you conducted, highlighting our Library’s position relative to comparable libraries in the state. So with these data, participants were able to appreciate the current Library services, this despite a less-than-ideal funding structure. I imagine few of us realized our Library is one of 14 (of the 97 comparable) libraries funded solely by a general fund, all of which struggle mightily from underfunding.
Equally, we appreciate that you made clear that the Supervisors do their best to support the Library while still meeting obligations for mandated services (e.g., public safety) and that we must be ready to take advantage of any opportunities that arise, for example, a state library bond, one that we missed several years ago.
Again, for the participants, you described the fragmented nature of our community, with too little engagement happening between and among groups, highlighting what we might call the commuter phenomenon. Since the Library serves everyone, we must find a way to connect all groups, a challenge for the work ahead.
We look forward to your continued participation as the Committee moves forward to assemble solid data that describe the current situation and clarify what is possible in the future.