Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Thursday

April 25, 2013

Editorial: New library would boost Kalkaska

Kalkaska County voters have to decide May 7 whether to springboard the county into the 21st Century by approving a request to build a new library that will allow for not only more books but better access to the internet and the rest of the planet.

It’s a crucial step for a community working hard in other areas to attract new businesses and jobs, upgrade recreation opportunities, and breathe new life into an aging downtown.

The biggest hurdle so far, however, doesn’t have anything to do with the need for a new library or what a larger, modern building could do for Kalkaska’s young people and the community as a whole.

Instead, the debate - if you can call it that - has come in the form of a flyer from a tea party-related group whose major opposition is summed up in three words - “no new taxes.” That’s not an argument, it’s a slogan, and it doesn’t address the pros and cons of building a new library or anything beyond “no.”

That’s not good enough. The existing library building is 73 years old and is less than 5,000 square feet. A foundation wall is bulging, there’s mold and there isn’t enough room for new books.

Library officials say the state average for a library serving a population the size of Kalkaska County is about 17,000-square feet. The existing library is also hemmed in with no room to expand.

The leader of an opposition group said he doesn’t think the library would benefit all of Kalkaska county. In fact, it would be a county facility and the millage would apply to every Kalkaska County property owner.

The 0.87-mill levy would cost the owner of a home with a taxable value of $30,000 just $25 a year, or 50 cents a week. The millage would also fund operating expenses for 20 years. The new building is estimated to cost no more than $3.83 million.

Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
Bill Murray Continues To Be Just Bill Murray By Eating Some Free Bill Murray Ice Cream Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect Hillary Clinton Blamed Bill's Affair With Monica Lewinsky On Abuse He Suffered As A Child 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl