We, as concerned citizens of Haakon County, feel that the County Commissioners should represent the entire county, not just a few people with an agenda, no matter how worthy that agenda may be.
We commend the Friends of the Library for trying to improve the existing facility. We are opposed to the plan that was presented to us due to the location, size and cost.
During a recent meeting of the commissioners, the subject came up of when the library was officially accepted from a woman’s organization to Haakon County. One of the board members said it was definitely the Haakon County Library.
In searching the minutes of the Haakon County commissioners, we found no record of when the library was officially accepted by the county. On the contrary, during a special meeting of the commissioners on January 14, 2005, the State Auditors present had some questions as to whether the library was a component unit of the county. The minutes go on to say that this was being looked into and some changes would probably need to be made.
The only other reference that we found pertaining to the ownership of the library was in a meeting of the Library Board saying that, according to the information available, it was indeed a County Library. Up to the present date, we found no evidence in the minutes that the commissioners made a motion and voted to accept it as a County Library. We realize that in the past the county has helped fund Philip’s library, as well as Midland’s library. Just because you donate to an organization, it doesn’t mean you own it.
We feel that all the citizens of Haakon County should be aware of the scope of the project, including the original cost, where it is to be built, and the upkeep and salaries, by the Library Board conducting public meetings in several outlying locations besides Philip, in addition to legal notices in the newspaper. We feel that these meetings should be held before any further action is taken by the Library Board or by the Commissioners. In this manner, all of the county residents would have an opportunity to ask questions and express their concerns or approval.
/s/ Donald Ferguson, Keith Emerson and Vern Foland