Saturday, April 9, 2011

8 Year Old Continues to Make His Own Splash for the Jersey City Free Public Library

Excerpt:   Paul Valleau is not a typical 8-year-old boy. While most other boys in Paul's neighborhood are playing video games or sports, Paul is raising money for the Jersey City Free Public Library system.

Thursday, Paul presented the library's director, Priscilla Gardner with a check for $1,212.84, money he earned from used book sales and a $400 donation.

"I wanted to do this because I just couldn't let the library close. I had to do something to help them," said Paul, who is homeschooled by his mother and grandmother. "So, I just came up with the idea to sell used books."

Now Paul has a Facebook account under the name Opus Jr. and people can visit the page to find out how to donate books

Related article:

Happy 110th Birthday to the New Britain Public Library

New Britain Library's 110th Anniversary. (Hartford Courant, 4/5/2011)

Excerpt: The library's main building opened in 1901 and was a gift from the estate of local industrialist Cornelius Erwin. He was co-founder of the Russell & Erwin Manufacturing Co.

Later, an adjacent building was added with a gift from Benjamin Hawley, who served as president of the same company. That structure, known as the Hawley Building, marked its 80th anniversary last December

Sorry, NBPL, but this is the #1 location on anyone's New Britain itinerary.

Reduced Hours, Frozen Positions @ Belvidere's Ida Public Library

Belvidere’s Ida Public Library cuts hours, freezes vacancies. (Rockford Register-Star, 4/7/2011)

Excerpt:  Ida Public Library officials announced the library will operate under reduced hours effective May 1 in response to budget constraints.

The Library Board’s approved a balanced $816,000 operating budget for FY 2011-12, which includes paying a $70,000 share of its employee benefits, for the first time. Historically, the city of Belvidere picks up the tab, however due to a challenging financial situation, the city opted to discontinue that practice for its FY 2012.

“It’s IMRF (Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund), Social Security and Medicare that they’re paying that they didn’t pay in the past,” said City Finance manager Pat Chamberlin.

Ida Public Library Director Debbie Bloom said cutting hours is one of several methods being used to keep the library in the black financially.

The changes in hours will mean the library will be open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., rather than from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and will be open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., rather than from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The move will save on personnel costs for Ida’s 21 employees.

Also, the library won’t fill a full-time assistant library director position or hire for three part-time summer jobs for a summer reading program. Those positions are frozen

Brown County Central Library @ the Heart of Its Community

Brown County Central Library update plans begin with education. (Green Bay Press Gazette, 4/9/2011)

Excerpt:   Community education that begins with a successful marketing plan is the route the Brown County Library Board has chosen in its efforts to get the Central Library renovated.

The board, left with the task of finding a way to either reduce the $23 million price tag on the project or coming up with funds that will convince the County Board to bond for some of it, began its education offensive Friday with the formation of a task force.

Headed by Kathy Pletcher, associate provost for Information Services at University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, the task force will include representatives from Downtown Green Bay Inc., Friends of the Library and library officials.

The cost will not be the initial focus.

"We need to define what the definition of a great library is and take the approach that this place is special," said Jeff Mirkes, executive director of Downtown Green Bay Inc. "A strong healthy downtown has a successful library and it speaks to the character of the community.

Related articles:
Committee to consider 5-step, $14 million upgrade to address library code violations.  (2/19/2011)
Speaking up for the Brown County library renovation. (12/5/2010)
Aging library needs to address code violation.  (11/26/2010)
$600,000 for code compliance is cut.  (11/3/2010)

94th Assembly District Special Election (Tuesday, May 3, 2011)

April 5th Primary Election Results

The Democratic candidates won 53.8% of the vote.  (So far, I haven't been able to determine how the 94th Assembly district voted in the Supreme Court race.  Overall, La Crosse County went solidly for Kloppenburg --17,379 to 12,124, or 58.2% -- but the 94th does not include the City of La Crosse.)

The seat was vacated when Gov. Walker appointed Mike Huebsch to be Secretary of the Department of Administration.

Huebsch was easily re-elected to the Assembly for the 8th time in November 2010.
But, as they say, that was then, and this is now.  (Steve Doyle currently serves as the La Crosse County Board Chair.)

Of the 3 open seats in the State Assembly, the 94th provides the Democrats with their best chance to register a gain.

83rd Assembly District Special Election (Tuesday, May 3, 2011)

The 60th Assembly seat was previously occupied by Scott Gunderson, who resigned to take a position as executive assistant with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources in January, although you'd never know this from the DNR website.

Gunderson breezed to re-election in the November 2010 election.

There was no primary election.

60th Assembly District Special Election (Tuesday, May 3, 2011)

April 5th Primary Election Results

Of the 15087 votes,  nearly 78% percent were cast for Republican primary candidates, not surprising considering the 60th district's geographic coverage.

Duey Stroebel advances to the May 3 special election with just under 27% of the Republican vote.

The seat was previously held by Mark Gottlieb, who resigned in early January to become the secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

Gottlieb was unopposed in his 2010 re-election.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tim Lee's Master Plan for Cobb County Public Libraries

Proposed Cobb budget plan would close most libraries, slightly increase taxes. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 4/8/2011)

Excerpt:     A plan by Cobb County’s Commission chairman would include a tax increase, close all but four of the county’s libraries and require across the board cuts in county departments to close a $31. 5 million budget gap.

Chairman Tim Lee’s plan includes a millage rate increase for the fire fund, which would move the county’s overall rate from 9.6 to 10.1. The .5 mill fire-fund increase would equal an additional $40 in taxes on a $200,000 house.

The plan also calls for all county departments to cut their budgets by 3.5 percent, for a $9 million savings. Another $2.6 million would be saved by closing two pools, two senior centers and most of the county’s libraries. Only the four regional branches — Central, Mountain View, South Cobb and West Cobb libraries — would remain open.

Commissioners are scheduled to vote on a mid-year, revised budget plan on Tuesday. The changes will take effect May 1.

Lee had not heard back from all commissioners on Friday and didn’t know if he had enough votes to pass his proposal

Related article:
Cobb County Public Library Systems raises fines, cuts hours.  (10/3/2010)

Madison's Central Library Latest Design Review

Final designs for Central Library being unveiled.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 4/7/2011)

Excerpt: After months of changes and tweaks, architects Thursday night is presenting the final working designs for the $29.5 million Central Library reconstruction.

The exterior design, which features a dramatic, glassy new entrance at the corner of North Fairchild and West Mifflin streets, got initial and final approvals on Wednesday from the city's Urban Design Commission.

A presentation by the firms Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle of Minneapolis and Potter Lawson of Madison is set for 7 p.m. at the Madison Senior Center, 300 W. Mifflin St.

The architects are offering details about the exterior and the interior design, materials, colors and other features, including the children's area and public meeting space, Library Board President Tripp Widder said

Designing a new central library:  "Everyone has to feel comfortable and safe here".  (11/17/2010)
Interview with principal architect of Central Library project.  (11/5/2010)
Design development juggling acts for a renovated Madison Central Library. (10/15/2010)
Conceptual designs for new Central Library.  (10/25/2010)
One possible message:  Don't settle for less.  (8/5/2010)
Downsizing the Madison Central Library renovation project. (7/17/2010)
Possible temporary location has asbestos problem.  (6/18/2010)
Architectural firm selected for Madison Central project.  (5/26/2010)
State Journal editorial board sez Madison City Council made right decision on Central Library. (5/10/2010)
Council vote on library goes under the radar.  (5/8/2010)
And the beat goes on.  (4/14/2010)
Mayor Responds to Critics on Library Issue.  (4/13/2010)
Board Endorses Renovation Plan.  (4/6/2010)
Keeping the dream of a new Madison Central Library alive. (3/31/2010)
Some Council Members Not Ready to Move Forward on Mayor's Renovation Plan.  (3/30/2010)
Council President Pro Tem to Introduce Resolution Approving Madison Central Library Renovation Project.  (3/28/2010)
'Dissatisfaction' with Collapsed Madison Central Library Project. (3/25/2010)
Fiore Departure Seen as Beneficial to Madison Central Project.  (3/23/2010)
Matter of Principle" Dooms New Central Madison Library.  (3/20/2010)
Madison Central: The Dream Dies, It's Now Time to Renovate. (3/19/2010)
Dispute over Construction Costs Threatens to Derail New Central Madison Library. (3/17/2010)
Madison Public Library Project Faces Delay in 2011. (3/9/2010)
Construction, Cost Concerns May Delay Madison Central Library Project. (1/25/2010)
New Madison Central Library Wins Council Approval. (11/11/2009)Capital Times Endorses New Madison Central Library. (11/10/2009)
Madison Council Begins Review of Mayor's Budget on Tuesday. (11/6/2009)
More Questions About Madison Central Library Project. (11/1/2009)
New Madison Public Library's First Change Order: Rooftop Garden.

Call for Referendum on New Madison Central Library Not Attracting Support. (10/21/2009)
Madison Board of Estimates Rejects Library Referendum. (10/13/2009)
Some Madison City Council Members Want Referendum on New Central Library. (10/9/2009)
Three former mayors support new Madison Central Library. (10/5/2010)
Wisconsin State Journal Editorial on New Madison Central Library. (9/13/2009)
New Madison Central Library: Let the Positioning Begin. (9/1/2009)
New Madison Central Library on Mayor Dave's Front Burner. (8/30/2009)
New Madison Central Library: Build or Renovate? (7/7/2009)
Motley Brown Not Reason Enough. (6/11/2009)
Fiore Plan Receives Unanimous Support. (6/5/2009)
Fiore Plan Gets Nod from Committee. (5/15/2009)
Public Forum Focuses on Central Library Options. (4/24/2009)
Developer Sweetens the Deal. (4/21/2009)
Visualizing a Remodeled Madison Central Library. (4/4/2009)
Renovation Plan Put on Table for Madison Central Library. (3/26/2009)
Residents Critique Proposals to Rebuild Downtown Library. (1/9/2009)
Competing Developers Defend Their Central Library Plans. (1/8/2009)
Comparison of Downtown Madison Library Proposals. (12/17/2008)
Two Proposals for New Madison Central Library. (12/3/2008)
Best Headline of the Week. (9/6/2008)

League of Wisconsin Municipalities Survey Results Pop Walker's Budget Balloons

Excerpt:  The savings from Gov. Scott Walker's collective bargaining bill will not make up for the massive cuts in his upcoming two-year budget, according to a survey produced by a statewide association of cities and villages.

The Wisconsin League of Municipalities on Thursday released a survey of its 36 largest members that concluded Walker's collective bargaining legislation would pay for only about 61 percent of the funding cut by his 2012 budget.

The findings run counter to Walker's long-standing position that severe limitations on collective bargaining would more than make up the lost money.

Survey results from other Wisconsin municipalities:   Appleton, Ashland, Baraboo, Beaver Dam, Beloit, DePere, Eau Claire, Fond du Lac, Fort Atkinson, Green Bay, Greenfield, Janesville, Kaukauna, La Crosse, Manitowoc, Marshfield, Merrill, Milwaukee, Neenah, New Berlin, Oak Creek, Oshkosh, Platteville, Pleasant Prairie, Racine, Sheboygan, South Milwaukee, Superior, Two Rivers, Watertown, Waupun, West Allis, West Bend, Whitewater, Wisconsin Rapids.

Low Turnout at Stevens Point JFC Budget Hearing Gives Robin Vos More Time to Read his Email

At a WisPolitics luncheon meeting recently, the following comment was ascribed to Joint Finance Committee Co-Chair Rep. Robin Vos.

A greater emphasis will be put on e-mails and other technology. For example, he does not intend to sit through a 36 hour public hearing when those comments could have easily been presented in writing. Every statement that is submitted will be read by the Co-Chairs. 

Few attend budget hearing in Stevens Point. (Wisconsin State Journal, 4/8/2011)

Excerpt: State troopers and local police blocked the road in front of the arena to vehicles. Local Democrats set up a tent across the street to sell food and "Recall Walker" buttons and planned a rally before the hearing began at 9 a.m.

"People have said this is a movement but it's more like a revolution," said Laura Hauser-Menting, co-chairwoman of the Portage County Democratic Party. "People have had their last button pushed."

But the rally never happened. A half-hour before the hearing began only a half-dozen or so protesters were outside the arena, and they left soon after the proceeding began and only about 200 people were in the arena when the Legislature's Republican-controlled budget committee started taking public comments

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Oral History Collection @ the Lester Public Library in Two Rivers

Oral history is worth preserving.  (Herald Times Reporter, 4/5/2011)

Excerpt:    Susie Menk, former reference associate at Lester Public Library, developed a program series entitled, "Story Circles at the Library."

The series ran from March 2009 until November 2010 and it was a program for people of all ages to recall memories, reminisce and share history and life experiences orally. They shared forgotten details with peers and brought history to life for a younger generation. Participants helped guide the program and came up with a total of 18 session topics such as "First Jobs," "Life on the Farm," "War and the Home Front" and "The Great Depression."

From these Story Circles came the idea of an oral history project. By videotaping participants one-on-one, some of these stories and memories could be preserved. Future generations could hear, in the words of people who lived through it, what the Great Depression was like or how World War II affected life in Two Rivers.

Menk set up appointments with individuals. Armed with a video camera and an outline of questions to keep interviewees on task, she created a series of DVDs now available at the library. Topics contained in the DVDs are varied but some common themes prevail — World War II, family life, local businesses, education, commercial fishing, religion, taverns, farming and even UFOs

Related article:
Story circles.  (10/15/2009)

From the Anti-Defamation League: "Public Libraries: A New Forum for Extremists

Thanks to Mark Arend for sharing.

Questions answered.

1. Can a library ban extremists from using library meeting rooms and facilities?

2. Can a public library adopt a policy forbidding the use of library meeting rooms for any political or religious purposes?

3. Can a public library limit the use of library meeting rooms and facilities to library card holders or residents of their immediate communities?

4. Can a public library require extremists to sign a contract to use library
meeting rooms and facilities?

5. Can a public library charge a fee for use of library meeting rooms or facilities?

6. Can a public library require demonstrators to obtain insurance or post a bond before they are allowed to use library meeting rooms or facilities?

7. What other types of restrictions, such as noise and location restrictions, can a public library place on extremist speakers?

8. What actions may a public library take if it believes that violence or property damage will occur if an extremist uses its meeting rooms or facilities?

9. What steps can a public library take to maintain security, peace and order at the library if an extremist uses its meeting rooms or facilities?

10. Must a public library allow extremists to hand out literature in the library?

11. May a public library regulate solicitation in its meeting rooms and facilities?

12. May a public library ban the display of offensive symbols by extremists using its meeting rooms or facilities?

13. Can a public library refuse to include extremist material from its collection?

14. Can a public library block extremist Web sites from its computers?

15. Can privately funded “public” libraries exclude extremist speakers from
their meeting rooms and facilities?

Class Size Research Trumps School Library Research in Neenah

Cuts to Neenah School Staff Recommended. (Appleton Post-Crescent, 4/6/2011)

Excerpt:   At the elementary level, administrators recommended adding two elementary teachers and five kindergarten teachers. The additional kindergarten teachers would lower the average class size from 24 to 19 pupils.

"We've learned through research that smaller class sizes, particularly at the primary levels, have academic benefits," said Steve Dreger, assistant district administrator of elementary learning and leadership.

To offset the additional elementary teachers, the administrative plan calls for cutting seven positions from instructional support services, including four of the eight elementary library-media specialists and two gifted-and-talented teachers

LINK to "School Library Impact Studies 101:  An Overview of the Research".

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Changing with the Times @ the Masillon Public Library

Libraries provide more than just books. (Massillon IndeOnline, 3/25/2011)

Excerpt: There once was a time when, if an individual wanted to read a book, he or she dropped by his or her favorite public library, checked it out and returned it two weeks later.

That wasn’t too long ago, but with the onslaught of technological advancements that has seemingly put so many things — including reading a book — at people’s fingertips, it can seem like eons ago.

But, just as technology has evolved, libraries have changed and grown as well. While libraries still are a great place to find the latest bestseller, they also are about so much more than that. They’re a key resource for individuals who don’t have Internet access themselves, they provide valuable job-training and education services, their literacy programs are fundamental building blocks for growing children and they serve as a vital community center.

“I’m a very strong believer in the role of the library as a community forum and a community gathering place,” said Kent Oliver, executive director of Stark County District Libraries, which has 10 branches throughout the county. “Historically, they talked about community gathering places and it used to be the school, the church and the town square. In a lot of ways these days it’s the school, the church and the public library.”

Keeping up with the changing technology has provided a constant supply of fresh challenges for libraries. In order to stay relevant, libraries have had to keep up with the constant changes in the delivery of information. Providing individuals who may not otherwise have access to that information is an important role for libraries

Will Catherine Cookson Find an Ebook Audience While Her Titles Languish in Print?

A sampling of 177 LINKcat bibliographic records.

New Kindle Exclusive: 91 Books from Bestselling British Author Dame Catherine Cookson. (TeleRead, 3/28/2011)

Excerpt: today announced that 91 titles from Dame Catherine Cookson are now available as e-books for the first time, exclusively in the Kindle Store ( The collection of titles, including some which are out of print, represents the majority of the full-length novels from one of the UK’s most-read novelists.

Once upon a time.

Struggling to Find an Ebook Common Agenda Between Libraries and Publishers

The Future Of Libraries In The E-Book Age. (NPR, 4/4/2011)

Excerpt:  Neiburger has more radical idea. He thinks libraries could deal directly with content providers: "The goal of the library is to obtain the ability to distribute content to its public. And if we can do that easier and more cheaply with the rights holder or the artist themselves and they make more money on it, then it may be heretical — but the future usually is."

That idea has potential, says Platt, but it may not be practical in the long run.

"In some scenario that will happen and that will grow," he says. "You will see more original content coming into library collections going forward and I think that's a wonderful thing, especially if libraries play a role in creation of that content. But on a regular matter of just ordering at scale the number of e-books that we add to our collection, that's a very difficult things to manage."

From the traditional to the visionary, the conversation about libraries in the digital age has begun in earnest. Roberta Stevens, president of the American Library Association, wants more publishing companies to get involved in the conversation, because at the moment some publishers aren't even willing to sell e-books to libraries. Libraries may be able to survive without those books now, says Stevens, but in the future a lot of books will only be available electronically

Related articles:
Ebooks and libraries:  "The challenges just keep piling up".  (3/28/2011)
Publishers Weekly tracks ebook sales.  (3/18/2011)
Word is getting out:  Ebooks @ your library.  (3/18/2011)
Ebooks continue to gain market share.  (3/17/2011)
Publishers look to bottom line in formulating ebook policies for libraries. (3/15/2011)
News stories on HarperCollins ebook decision go mainstream.  (3/5/2011)
9 years of book sales:  trade and ebook.  (2/17/2011)
Will ebook readers be wooed by Barbara Cartland?  (2/12/2011)
The impact of ebooks on libraries.  (2/11/2011)
OverDrive news release: Library eBook circs up 200% in '10. (1/10/2011)
Mashable: 5 ebook trends that will change the future of publishing. (12/29/2010)
Christmas 2010 the tipping point for ebooks?  (12/24/2010)
Ereader as brown paper bag.  (12/9/2010)
The ebook reader compatibility surprise.  (12/3/2010)
Ereader ownership:  Survey says....  (11/30/2010)
David Carnoy asks, "Does the Kindle pay for itself?" (11/29/2010)
Need to repair that ebook reader?  (11/19/2010)
Who uses an ereader:  Survey says....  (9/22/2010)
Book industry wrestles with print vs. pixels.  (9/2/2010)
Coming soon to a screen near you:  Ads in ebooks.  (8/20/2010)
Ebooks now comprise 8/5% of book sales. (8/12/2010)
Genre paperback publishers drops print.  (8/6/2010)
Ebooks and libraries.  (5/4/2010)
Ebooks eliminate a free form of adversiting:  the book jacket.  (3/31/2010)
Ebooks: another round of false promises?  (3/19/2010)
The skinny on ebooks.  (3/8/2010)
Hardcover vs. ebook:  Breaking down the costs.  (3/1/2010)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Democratic Legislators Schedule Another Series of Public Hearings on the Budget

Public hearings on the budget require a substantial commitment of time -- hours of travel and waiting to earn your 3 minutes of microphone time.  They have never been a particularly effective way to deliver a message and connect with legislators.  Even more so this year.

How important are the 4 public hearings scheduled by the Joint Committee on Finance?  (Note.)

Here's a summary of what co-chair Robin Vos (R-Burlington) has to say:   Greater emphasis will be put on e-mails and other technology. For example, he does not intend to sit through a 36 hour public hearing when those comments could have easily been presented in writing. Every statement that is submitted will be read by the Co-Chairs. 

In other words, he's really not that into you -- or what you have to say in a public forum.

Though well-intentioned, the 11 public hearings sponsored by Democratic legislators are nothing more than, pardon my bluntness, a series of feel-good exercises. 

As an alternative, the Wisconsin Library Association encourages its members to schedule meetings with legislators at a library in the district..  Connecting with Republicans legislators is particularly important at this time.   In at least four recent examples -- Bill Kramer, Evan Wynn, Amy Loudenbeck, and Tom Tiffany -- our message seems to resonate more strongly in small-group settings.

It's all about relationship-building.  Better to have a conversation than read testimony.

Stay tuned for specific talking points.  LD&L is still in the process of piecing together a final version and coordinating a series of partnership approaches to our advocacy efforts. 

Tony Evers National Library Week Guest Editorial: Strong Libraries Needed to Improve the State's Economy

Maintenance of Effort Elimination Threatens Already Bare-Bones Library Budgets

Libraries may suffer with proposed funding change. (Jackson County Chronicle, 3/31/2011)

Excerpt: Walker has proposed to eliminate a requirement where a local municipality must minimally fund its library at the average of the prior three years.

The move would help municipalities control costs and counter proposed reductions in state aids as Walker tries to close a $3.6 billion deficit, but it could cause some libraries to see drastic changes in funding. The budget also calls for a near 10 percent cut in library system aids next year and flat funding for 2013.

Counties still would be required to fund at least 70 percent of library service costs for county residents outside the library’s municipality. But that, too, could drop if spending and subsequent circulation decrease.

Jackson County has two public libraries: the Black River Falls Public Library and Taylor Memorial Library, both part of the Winding Rivers Library System. Gunderson and Karyn Schmidt, Taylor Memorial Library librarian, say the libraries have good working relationships with their respective municipality, and neither anticipates seeing large cuts in local funding if Walker’s budget is approved.

Still, they said there is a chance city and village budget money could be shifted as the city council and village board try to make up funding losses for other departments. Black River Falls Mayor Ron Danielson and Taylor Village President Daryl Boe could not be reached for comment in time for this story.

“The village has been extremely helpful,” Schmidt said. “I give them a barebones budget, and they give me that. I don’t ask for much.

Meet Rene Bue, Bilingual Outreach Coordinator @ the Hedberg Public Library

Rene Bue speaks up for local Latino community. (Janesville Gazette, 3/27/2011)

Excerpt: Years later, Bue, 49, is president of the Latino Service Providers Coalition and chairwoman of the Diversity Action Team of Rock County. She helps Latinos with language barriers connect with local services and advocates for diversity in Rock County.

"I am honored to be the voice of the people who have no voice. I am proud to fight for those who are not able to fight for themselves," Bue said.

Bue was born in Black River Falls and moved to Janesville as a young girl.

She graduated from Parker High School and later lived in Florida, Kentucky, California, Virginia and the Virgin Islands. She returned to Janesville in 1986.

At age 30, Bue attended UW-Rock County and later graduated from UW-Madison with a bachelor's degree in psychology and Latin American and Iberian studies. She learned Spanish in college and fell in love with Latin American culture.

Bue later began interpreting locally while working other jobs at restaurants and cell phone companies.

Her relationship with the Latino community helped her become the bilingual outreach coordinator in 2007 at Hedberg Public Library. Her job includes creating multicultural programming, handling the Spanish collection and organizing events such as the multicultural fair

Community Outreach @ the Orfordville Public Library

Sarah Strunz reaches out to Orfordville through library, volunteering. (Janesville Gazette, 3/28/2011)

Excerpt: When a workspace is too small, make it bigger.

That's what Sarah Strunz has done with her outreach efforts as librarian at the Orfordville Public Library.

The cramped library is smaller than many houses—only 1,200 square feet in two stories at the corner of Beloit, Center and Spring streets downtown.

A lack of computers and space didn't stop Strunz from finding ways to offer computer classes and story times around the community. She understands the importance of a local library, and she is helping to plan a new library that she hopes to see built in the next couple of years.

"When I come to work, I feel like I'm providing a service that wouldn't be provided in any other way," she said.

Strunz is very enthusiastic and does a lot of outreach in the community, said Ruth Ann Montgomery, director of the Arrowhead Library System

Budget-Cutting Scenarios @ the Janesville School District

Janesville School District officials provide details on cutbacks at meeting. (Janesville Gazette, 4/1/2011)

Excerpt:    This is what Janesville education might look like with a 13 percent budget cut:

-- More suspensions and expulsions, if counselors and school-based police officers are cut.

The officers and counselors work to prevent trouble, but that proactive approach would be gone, and police would spend more time making runs to the schools to handle trouble. Schools could be less safe.

-- Fewer graduates, if the counselors are cut, because they track students' progress and push at-risk students to keep up with their graduation credit requirements.

-- Less of an effort in the elementary and middle schools to focus on individual students' academic needs, if learning-support teachers, who analyze student test data and run small-group learning sessions, are cut.

-- Teachers who have difficulty with computer technologies would not have someone on hand to help them, because the librarians—these days the schools' software experts—could be gone. Scratch library story times, too.  [Emphasis added.]

Those were a few of the answers from district administrators Thursday when Janesville School Board members asked what the district might look like if all the budget cuts now on the table were carried out.