Really need a $20 million library rebuild?

By: Diane Benjamin

Of course the current meeting room is frequently booked – it’s free. Does that mean taxpayers should build 2 more free rooms?

The big reason given for the Bloomington Library expansion is it was built decades ago for a smaller population. That doesn’t explain the consistent decrease in circulation since 2013, except for some minor increases during 2020. You wouldn’t know this if you listened to the Monday night presentation – exactly the opposite was stated.

Listen to the video yourself: https://blnnews.com/2020/11/17/bloomington-last-night-4/

From the latest Library Board Packet, PDF page 13: https://www.bloomingtonlibrary.org/Assets/files/bpl_board/boardpackets/2020/2020.11bplboardpacket.pdf

The same page proves expanding the library has nothing to do with books – they want to turn it into a social and fun club at your expense:

Active users are higher. Some use computers, some attended kids events, some attend adult events. Some download E books. Circulation shows they aren’t checking out actual books.

It is going to be built no matter what you say. When the nicest buildings in town are owned by government, you are being ruled – not governed. Their throne is built at your expense.

17 thoughts on “Really need a $20 million library rebuild?

  1. In the past when i went to the library, the kids room was busy with family groups. The adult section was a hangout area for hshm folks who had nothing to do but sit and occupy chairs andsadly to say smell up the place. The police station, court house and fgovt. center have rooms for public use. Hopefully, we won’t us this library to entertain the masses, as in gladitorial games, we already give them bread. Rome bit the dust with too much government as we are heading in that direction.

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  2. Sad our Bloomington council members are so irresponsible! Bloomington doesn’t need this and we need to get responsible people on this council that know and can handle our tax payer money rather than consistently spending on unimportant items.

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  3. The Library Board is a separate group of folks from the City Board – they hold their own meetings and have their own budget (which you can see how much you are contributing by looking at the individual line items on your property tax bill – or if you rent, know that your landlord is allocating a portion of your monthly rent towards the library budget)

    The Bloomington Library Board meeting information =
    Third Tuesday of each Month
    5:30 PM – William C. Wetzel Reading Room

    Here are the current folks who are deciding how to spend your tax dollars

    Members POSITION NAME TERM EXP
    Mayor Appointed Position Vice President Mohr, Susan 4/30/2021
    Mayor Appointed Position Treasurer Whitworth, Alicia 4/30/2023
    Mayor Appointed Position Member Hollister, Dianne 4/30/2021
    Mayor Appointed Position Member Watchinski, Matthew 4/30/2021
    Mayor Appointed Position President Westerhout, Julian 4/30/2022
    Mayor Appointed Position Member Parker, Catrina 4/30/2023
    Mayor Appointed Position Member Henry, Alicia 4/30/2022
    Mayor Appointed Position Secretary Miller, Van 4/30/2022
    Mayor Appointed Position Member Argenziano, John 4/30/2023
    City Staff Jeanne Hamilton N/A
    Mayor Appointed Position Indicates Mayor Appointed Position

    Here is the link, in case the information above is not formatted well =
    https://www.cityblm.org/government/boards-commissions/library-board-of-trustees

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  4. The Town of Normal Library is trying this same LAME approach of “we need to put millions of dollars into our library”
    Why don’t these 2 libraries combine to form a McLEAN COUNTY LIBRARY?
    It could be located in the old Macy’s building at Eastland Mall – tons of space, multiple floors and tons of parking

    There are so many duplications across the twin cities of Bloomington/Normal I always wonder when Bloomington & Normal can actually work together to make smart decisions for the tax payers. Combining forces for better services would be appreciated!!

    Meanwhile…
    Bloomington Library just announced they will be closing the facility due to COVID staring November 20th

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  5. Just using December 2013 and 2020, {if my math is right), there was a 20% drop in circulation, noting a drop of 21,000 items/books. Would wonder if e-books are included in circulation, I would think actual physical books checked out may be extremely low. I don’t read e-books, but my wife does a lot. There’s typically anywhere from 25 to 100 people in front of her waiting their turn to “check out” a particular e-book. It can take from a month to several months before she gets to read it. With these kind of wait times, why not invest funds in more copies of e-books, especially popular books/authors. But this thought does depend on if e-books are included in circulation counts.

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  6. Hey STUCKINILLINOIS, I like your ideal, and Tari (aka shorty) could take credit for “Re-inventing” Eastland mall and bringing business INTO town, rather then enforcing mr CHUBBIES covid rules, while his wife AND daughter get fat in Florida.
    FLUSH ILLINOIS BEFORE KOOS, RENNER JB the DEMONRATS and the ECONOMY do!

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  7. Libraries are the Block Buster Video Stores of information storage and dissemination.

    Now, anyone who proposes or supports building or adding on or renovating libraries is:

    1. A fool stuck in 1983
    2. A hack who stands to gain politically or financially
    3. A disconnected socialist elite
    4. A low IQ leftist (you know who you are)
    5. A 94 year old retired librarian
    6. A professor in the Library Sciences Department
    7. A book seller
    8. A Social Service SJW who wants publicly funded indoctrination centers
    9. A BLM member (heavy books are good for throwing)
    10. A Democrat because they are smarter than you

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  8. Businesses are closing and people are losing their jobs left and right, but Tari has decided that it would be better to spend $20 million on a fancy building for old books and knitting club meetings, rather than relief for small businesses struggling to survive. Brilliant! I see mayoral candidate Michael Straza took a mild swipe at the City on Facebook for not offering assistance to the business community. Here’s a thought, maybe if the Council stopped wasting time renaming holidays and pandering to SJWs, we could build and sustain a stronger community.

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  9. The litmus test for Bloomington Mayoral Candidates needs to be where do you stand on Bloomington spending money on 1) the West Side Swimming Pool, 2) the Downtown Bus Transfer Center and 3) the Bloomington Library? The first candidate against all three is most likely to get my support.

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