Who would’ve thought a column about the library would create such controversy?
So far I’ve been yelled and made fun of by the Onamia City Council, accused of shoddy journalism by the Friends of the Library, and invited to coffee by the director of the East Central Regional Library. (I thought that might mean she liked the column, but I was told otherwise by the county commissioner who is on the library board.)
Off the record, several people have agreed with one or more of my points.
All I said was that
1. IMHO, the historical depot would not make a good library.
2. The city council shouldn’t have given it to the library so unceremoniously, given that there was a tenant who provided a service to the community (Mille Lacs Area Tourism Council).
3. There are other options for a library (Rolf Olsen Center or a downtown storefront or, my humorous conclusion, move the city council into the depot with the tourism coucil, and make the city hall into a library).
4. The Friends of the Library don’t need the East Central Regional Library to start a library. (I referred to “the great and powerful ECRL,” which apparently some took exception to. It was a joke. I know the library is not REALLY great and powerful.)
Apparently there’s some bad blood between the city council and the tourism council, and possibly between the school administration and/or board (which controls the ROC) and the city and/or friends of the library.
A lot of people would love to see the library in the ROC, and I think it should be considered. But I don’t live there, so I should just shut up about it.