SHELLEY – The North Bingham County District Library in Shelley is asking voters to approve a bond to purchase a larger facility that has more space for people and library materials.
The library is looking to purchase and move into the former BMC West building at the north end of Shelley.
Storyteller Sesha Hammond was reading the book, “Pet Show,” by Ezra jack Keats, to preschoolers.
Discussion about the book centered on vocabulary.
“Were there words in this book that are not generally in your conversation with your child?” Hammond asked the preschoolers’ parents.
Bragged was one suggestion. Independent, germ, expect and hang-out were others.
“Books use more words to expand a child’s vocabulary than television,” Hammond said.
Thirty-seven preschoolers, plus 19 parents, were attending Storytime on this day.
“A new library would expand the possibilities to teach children, parents, families and adults,” Hammond said. “The new space has tremendous potential.”
The library is asking voters to approve this $2.5 million bond. Two million will go to purchase the property, the former BMC West building.
The remaining half million would start the remodel of the building.
“We will remodel as we are able,” said Heidi Riddoch, Director of the North Bingham County District Library. “If the bond passes, we will sell our other assets to help remodel the building as well as apply for grants.
Remodeling is scheduled as the library can afford it.
“Typically, you build a library once in your lifetime,” Riddoch said. “I think this will be big enough that it would go for years and years.
“It would be a real asset to the community in terms of its location, space and the things that we could offer,” she said. “It makes the community look better and gives families more choices.”
So why does the library want to move into this building?
“Space, space, space,” said Riddoch. “The current library is out of space and needs more room.
“We are out of room for our collections, our programming and tutoring.”
“The current parking lot is too small,” she said. “Our children need to prepare for their future by having access to information and the technology a new library could provide.
“A library serves people from birth to death,” Riddoch said. “It is also a gathering place for the community events and information.”
If the library is out of space, why buy more books?
“People who don’t stay current are out of business,” Riddoch said.
The library checked out close to 180,000 items in 2011; that’s 15.7 items per capita.
This bond would cost $16.98 per year for a family with property valued at $100,000.
“That’s the price of one meal out with my family,” Hammond said.
To pass this bond, the library needs a super majority—67 percent or more.
The bond is on the ballot for voters living in the Shelley and Firth School Districts. Only electors living in these districts are eligible to vote on this bond.
Polls for the general election will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
For convenience, “in person” absentee voting is available at the Bingham County Clerk’s office in the courthouse in Blackfoot until 5 p.m. this Friday.