library plan sees opposition from smaller cities
March 30, 2009 | LOGAN -- The idea of a county-wide
library is facing opposition from smaller cities in
the valley that say the proposed plan would not serve
them properly, said Cache County Executive Lynn Lemon
in a press conference Friday.
The proposal would place all libraries in Cache County
under a single system, he said. This system would allow
all county residents to take advantage of the services
from any library in the valley, Lemon said.
However, an analysis of the currently library system
showed that all libraries in the county take roughly
$2.5 million to operate, which would increase to $3.6
million after the implementation of the proposed country
library system, he said.
"One of our biggest arguments against the library
was the cost," Lemon said. "The cost to (create a county
library) is significantly more."
Lemon said another complaint against the county-wide
library was the difference in quality of the many libraries
around the county. While the Logan Library has a vast
collection of books and services, the Mendon city library
can only offer a small collection of books, he said.
This would force many of the smaller libraries to
pay more than what they currently pay, while simultaneously
lessening the amount larger cities pay.
"The $3.6 million was going to be the property tax
of the average home, which would be some where between
$60 and $80 extra a year," Lemon said.
The county recently asked every city to hold a public
hearing regarding the proposed library and report back,
Lemon said. Only Logan city was 100 percent behind the
idea, with many of the smaller cities requesting changes
to the plan.
After hearing the response, Lemon said the county
prepared a new plan to examine how important a county
library is to Cache County as a whole.
The new proposal would charge anyone who wishes to
use the Logan library $60 for a library card for an
18-month trial period. Lemon said the county wishes
to see how many people are truly interested in a county
"All the county is trying to do is figure out how
many people want to use a bigger library," Lemon said.
The $60 per person is roughly how much residents would
pay extra for property tax if plans for the county library
are passed, Lemon said. However, between 3,000 and 4,000
residents must show interest for the county to consider
the plan to be successful, he said.
"If only 200 people say they are willing to buy a
card for $60, that's not enough of a demand if you think
about (Cache Valley's) 120,000 residents," he said.