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The library bond will not give us 21st century libraries.

Original post made by Resident on Oct 5, 2008

Here is an article from the Daily showing that the Bond leaves basic library improvements untouched. The Bond is not going to give us a 21st century library, just new buildings.

Web Link

I had decided not to post any more on this subject, but when I found this article I just had to show my feelings once again. We need to update our library service, not just the buildings.

Comments (10)

Posted by anonymous, a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 5, 2008 at 9:49 pm

yes, the libraries need the building upgrades and the technology improvements. there's a lot of work to be done, and thankfully the bond will hit the biggest ticket item - making our facilities up to standard. from the daily article, it looks like the staff is making progress on the technology items.

Posted by Tim, a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 6, 2008 at 7:32 am

Vote no on N. We don't need five libraries. Remember NO ON N. NO ON N.

Posted by No on N, too, a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Oct 6, 2008 at 10:19 am

I found it interesting that two of the issues that needed to be addressed were "the constant need to cart returned books between various branches." and "more funding to begin delivering books between branches on weekends." This is due to our more efficient branch system! (yes that was said sarcastically). Vote no on N!

Posted by Not this N, a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 6, 2008 at 10:31 am

The article uncovers a few disturbing problems with our 5 branch system which haven't been widely discussed.
1. In reference to electronic tagging RFIDs, "The audit suggested that could be especially helpful in Palo Alto given the constant need to cart returned books between various branches." Carting books between branches is wasteful. Wasteful of tax dollars, gas, employee time, wasteful.
2. "The consultant's report found [implementing RFID] would be worthwhile at the Main, Children's and Mitchell Park libraries, though not at the smaller Downtown and College Terrace branches, Jennings said." These smaller branches are getting in the way of progress. They are expensive artifacts of our library system. They are the cause of the inefficiencies, and they will be a major cause of Measure N not passing. Get rid of them and you'll find the community DOES support libraries, just not 5 them wasting our hard-earned dollars.
3. "A second recommendation that requires more funding is to begin delivering books between branches on weekends. That would help prevent circulation backlogs, the audit found." Two observations. First, maintaining 5 branches creates circulation backlogs. Second, fixing the circulation backlog requires ongoing additional funding for staff to shuttle the books between all our branches. Measure N doesn't fix this problem; the libraries will continue to require funding as long as we maintain 5 branches.
4. "Library staff asked the city for money for Saturday deliveries in the 2008-09 budget, but the request was denied." Bravo to whoever sets these budgets for being mindful of our tax dollars. Apparently someone there gets it, that there must be a line drawn for how much a 5-branch system is allowed to drain the budget.

Posted by TJ, a resident of Community Center
on Oct 6, 2008 at 12:29 pm

The world's financial markets are in free fall, the Dow is down again over 700 points, and you honestly expect me to vote you $76 Million to build these oversized "book buildings" that we don't need.

Posted by Katie, a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 7, 2008 at 9:45 am

Agree, not this N!

Posted by curious, a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 7, 2008 at 9:55 am

I'm really surprised by the juxtaposition of this bond with the recent School bond. On these boards everyone expected the school bond to pass thought there were some people arguing against here. For this library bond it almost appears the opposite. There are very few individuals (as opposed to the same person posting multiple times and we all know who he is) arguing for this bond. The arguments that are used for this bond are also emotional whereas the arguments for the school bond were practical.
Is there really no compelling reason to vote for this bond?

Posted by not this time, a resident of Midtown
on Oct 7, 2008 at 10:17 am

Yes, there is no compelling reason to vote for N, so please vote NO on N.

Posted by anonymous, a resident of Esther Clark Park
on Oct 27, 2008 at 7:11 pm

" First, maintaining 5 branches creates circulation backlogs. Second, fixing the circulation backlog requires ongoing additional funding for staff to shuttle the books between all our branches. Measure N doesn't fix this problem; the libraries will continue to require funding as long as we maintain 5 branches."

IN fact, it's been shown to be just the opposite!

Vote YES on N

Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 28, 2008 at 4:55 pm

I firmly believe that many of the people posting here have no idea what a 21st century library looks like. For those who are content with the present idea of a small branch like DT or CT, they should open their blinkers to the fact that there is something even better than what they are picturing. It isn't just a matter of getting repairs made to an outdated building, or even replacing an outdated building. It is actually getting a service which is far superior to the service we are getting now in terms of actual service.

And, there are many things I love about our library. I love the email service, both to tell me that items I have put on hold are available and the reminder that they are due back in a couple of days. These are services that many others do not have. But, other libraries have other services which are better than ours, like being open earlier in the day and later in the evening, both things which I would like to have. There is nothing worse than getting an email to say that the book you put on hold is available and you arrive there only to find that the library does not open for another hour, or closed 5 minutes ago and I won't be passing the library again for a few days, which means making a special trip or waiting longer than I want.

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