Lib Politics Rodeo: NH Primary Edition
As a native and former New Hampshire resident, I always get excited by their primary.
With all of the attention that NH receives as hosting the first primary of the nation, candidates were constantly coming through town along with the news crews and crowds. Even though I live on the other side of the country now, every four years I still get updates from my parents on which candidates are passing through the state
In honor of the Granite State’s Primary, today we are having a New Hampshire themed rodeo, focusing on local granite state libraries that are on the ballot. Here are today’s stories:
We're starting off with the Gilmanton Public Library, which is currently seeking voter support for a long-term funding plan. The library was formed 6 years ago, and it's funding has annually appeared on the ballot. The board will have two warrant articles on the ballot on March 8th. The first is a three-year request to secure continued level funding and operation and allow for strategic multi-year planning and eligibility for grants that require the show of town support. The second article is a the same one year request for funding that has been on previous ballots, this year as a backup in case the first article does not pass.
Next up, we'll head over towards the coast where the Kingston Community Library will also have two warrant article on the March 8th ballot. The first calls for the establishment of a fund for future library maintenance, operation and repair and the second will create a full-time, permanent youth librarian position.
Just up the road from Kingston the Madbury Public Library is in the beginning stages of building a new library. They are currently holding public forums for community members to meet with the steering committee and the architects who are presenting preliminary designs and drawings of the proposed new library building.
Wadleigh Memorial Library Trustees are facing an uphill battle in Milford, making the case for a much needed new library building. The current building is experiencing rotting windows, damaged ceilings, basement flooding and other defects. Trustees are asking for a $5.6 million bond to build the proposed 21,000 square foot building. The same article was on the ballot last year, but only received 40% of the vote. This year, city officials are not recommending the ballot, citing the impact on taxes. The Budget Committee oppose the article 6-3, and selectmen oppose it 4-1.
Milford is a great example of how important it is to consider a candidate's support of your local library when you cast your ballot. As John Chrastka, writing about the New Hampshire primary, over at votelibraries.org eloquently states "When you cast your vote on Tuesday and on March 8th, consider how your candidates look at libraries, what they say the role of taxes are in building healthy communities and moving smart investments forward...When you vote, be the best kind of special interest voter and #votelibraries."
As always, we will keep you updated on these ballot measures. And stay tuned: as the primaries sweep across America, we will be bringing you more stories from around the country of the hard work and commitment of our local library supporters and champions.
If you're in New Hampshire and want to share the #votelibraries message today or on March 8th, visit VoteLibraries.org and grab any of the images there - copyright free - to use as your profile pic.