Low public use and increasing cost averages have prompted the Pulaski County Library Board to consider alternative solutions for the use of its Medaryville branch.
Talks are ongoing to give ownership of the site to the Town of Medaryville. The Library board has presented an offer to the Town, but no decisions have been made.
According to Pulaski County Library Board Treasurer Judy Heater, those negotiations have come to a crawl.
“We’ve just hit some snags so nothing really has happened,” says Heater. “We went to a board meeting, we talked to them, we made the offer. Right now, I guess, we’re just kind of in a holding pattern.”
Cost averages for the Medaryville branch have been analyzed over the past four years to better understand how the facility is being used. It costs more than $6.40 per item checked out of the location – which is considered quite high.
Heater says the board watched that figure increase over the years and set the $6 price point as a cost figure that was unlikely to be reached. Questions remain for the Library Board’s lawyers before any transaction is completed.
Under the proposal, the Town would own the site, but the library would leave the books and continue providing computer and internet access. Heater says an effort will always be made to keep an internet and computer presence in Medaryville.
“We’ll keep that presence there if at all possible,” says Heater. “And I can’t imagine that there isn’t some way to do that.”
Even if the Town of Medaryville rejects the offer, the Library Board has plans to keep providing computer access for students and adults in need of the products.
For the time being, the Library Board hopes to find out more during their August 19th Board meeting.