Keene Memorial Library

Keene Memorial Library

Members of the Keene Memorial Library’s advisory board combined the new with the old during a Monday meeting.

Board members learned about a new fundraising firm hired for the library expansion project and continued discussion regarding a city code and a policy handbook.

Tina Walker, library director, said the Friends of Keene Memorial Library hired Paul J. Strawhecker, Inc., of Omaha to take expansion project fundraising efforts forward.

“They’re coming up with a marketing plan, setting dates and scheduling meetings,” Walker said.

Walker noted that two years have been spent laying the groundwork and Strawhecker representatives are happy with what’s been done thus far.

She’s also learned about more grants for which she can apply.

The estimated cost of the library expansion is between $10 million and $12 million. It will be funded mostly through private donations and grants with the $2 million bond helping to act as matching funds for the grants.

Also during the meeting, the board welcomed its newest member, Tom Adamson, a retired Midland University professor.

Fremont Mayor Scott Getzschman appointed Adamson to the board, which recommended him for the position. He fills the seat vacated by Lori Dahl who has resigned.

In other business, the library board reviewed a draft of the revised Article 7 of the City of Fremont’s Municipal Code. Article 7 has information about the library, but it is outdated.

Written many years ago, the outdated information states that the city manages the library, reading room, art gallery and museum.

The city doesn’t manage an art gallery, reading room or museum. Article 7 also refers to the library by different names.

Walker has worked on updating the information and gave copies of a draft to advisory board members to see what editing they would recommend.

At Monday’s meeting, board members looked at other sections in the draft of Article 7, including one regarding damaged and lost books.

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They talked about changing the word “book” to “materials,” since the library has more than books.

Another section of Article 7 states that “Any person removing a book from the library without properly checking it out shall be deemed to be guilty of a misdemeanor.”

Board members preferred a suggestion to change this to indicate that situations where items from the library were removed without having been properly checked out would be turned over to the county attorney for prosecution.

Walker asked members to take home the draft and review it and bring it to the September meeting.

The board also discussed the Library Policy Handbook.

Walker reviewed background about the handbook since Adamson has just joined the board.

“Our library policies were so out of date. They hadn’t been touched in years,” Walker explained.

Instead of revising one policy at a time, Walker and Laura England-Biggs, youth services librarian, worked on the whole manual.

“We sent the entire policy manual out to the board,” Walker said. “They had it for two months and made edits and changes. We made edits and changes and then this is a completed draft version with all staff edits, board member edits.”

Walker said the revised manual is easier to follow.

Board members have received copies of the updated handbook, which they are asked to review one last time and bring back to the next meeting on Sept. 16.

They will be asked to vote on whether to recommend the new manual at that time. If they vote to do so, Walker then plans to take it to Fremont City Council for approval on Sept. 24.

The library advisory board meets at 3:30 p.m. the third Monday of each month in the board room on the second floor of the library. Meetings are open to the public.

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News Editor

Tammy Real-McKeighan is news editor of the Fremont Tribune. She covers news, features, religion stories and writes the weekly faith-based, Spiritual Spinach column.

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