On its own, Lake Elmo Public Library looks for longevity

  • Article by: andrew krammer , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 1, 2013 - 12:48 PM

A corps of volunteers has fueled the Lake Elmo public library’s rebirth after its separation from the county system. Opinions vary over whether the city can sustain its undertaking.

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asianaMay. 20, 13 3:34 PM

" $250,000 is not enough to create and maintain a library. That’s nothing to run something like this" Apparently Anne Smith is not aware of the fact that Washington County spent far less than $250,000 to run the old Lake Elmo branch library, and they did it with paid staff. The statement that Lake Elmo residents do not have services from county libraries is also incorrect. Any Lake Elmo resident can obtain a Washington county library card (100% reimbursable from City of Lake Elmo) and check out materials from any county library. So, in from a practical standpoint, Lake Elmo library already has affiliate status with Washington County libraries. Any resident can borrow any book in the system. The difference is that same resident now also has access to all the materials in the Lake Elmo library, without competition from other users in the system. This creates a situation where LE residents have better access to the bestsellers (there is almost never hold queue for bestsellers, while at Washington county is common to be queued up behind 50-100 other borrowers for these same books).

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asianaMay. 20, 13 4:11 PM

"I think the inevitable is that we’ll end up back in the Washington County library system" The Washington County library system has shut down LE library twice. What makes you think they wouldn't just do that again, and why would you give them the power to do it again?

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summer12May. 31, 13 8:32 PM

The LE library is a joke. It is not even close in comparison with the other county libraries. Anne Smith was the only practical one in voting going independent. Just another in the long line of wrong decisions by Lake Elmo. A financial decision had to be made. People were not going to the LE library. The county did offer another model but it was not good enough for the arrogant leaders of the city. Funny, now two of them are gone and the library is one of the reasons.

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FrankLJun. 2, 13 7:37 PM

The writer of the story seems to miss the point is that the choice was no library or go it alone. What I find interesting is that since they are not bound by bureaucracy they can buy books at a discount instead of at overinflated prices.

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