PARKERSBURG - About 40 people gathered in the south Parkersburg branch of the Parkersburg and Wood County Public Library Thursday to support a five-year levy.
"The biggest beneficiary of the levy will be south Parkersburg," said Charlotte Corbitt with the Friends of the Parkersburg and Wood County Public Library.
If passed in the Nov. 6 election, the levy would generate $2,273,500 during the five years. The annual cost to a homeowner would be $6.48 on a $100,000 residence.
Photo by Jolene Craig
About 40 supporters of the south Parkersburg branch of the Parkersburg and Wood County Public Library gather in the small building during a rally Thursday.
"The funds will help build a new, large facility in south Parkersburg because what we have now is not nearly enough," Corbitt said.
The current branch was built in 1972 and is a small 1,200 square feet, said Ann Cushing with the Friends of the Library.
"This building was never meant to be a permanent structure and has been here 40 years," Cushing said. "We need more and want to give the community what it deserves."
Jim Miracle of Vienna said he supports the library in everything the Friends of the Library does.
"I was in high school at Parkersburg South when they built this branch," Miracle said. "It wasn't big enough then and it's not big enough now."
If the levy is passed, the plan is to use some of the funds generated as the match to construct a 5,000- to 10,000-square-foot facility to allow the book collection to grow, make room for additional computers, add seating, parking, meeting rooms and a dedicated children's librarian.
"This is a dream the Friends have had for a long, long time," Corbitt said. "With the funds we will be able to build a nice facility for the community."
The south branch has one employee that works 35 hours a week, but a larger facility would require more hours and people.
Along with plans for a larger south side library, the funds would also go to move the entrance of the main library from Emerson Avenue to the side parking lot for increased accessibility; add weekend hours at Williamstown and south side; reinstate cut hours for Waverly and the bookmobile; increase sharing of materials with Vienna Library and Wood County schools; increase staff dedicated to children's services and contribute to the general operation of the library.
The Friends of the Library will hold its semi-annual book sale from 1 to 5 p.m. today and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the main branch.
"All of the money raised during the sale will go to the library to help do what funding is not able to cover," Cushing said.