Fifth Time A Charm For Mercer Township Library-President Hopes S - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Fifth Time A Charm For Mercer Township Library-President Hopes So

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Aledo's public library was built 100 years ago with money donated by Andrew Carnegie.

Now, the library needs major renovations, but hasn't been able to raise the money privately.

The library board is going to the voters for the fifth time next month, hoping that they can get a two point eight million dollar bond referendum passed, to update their 98 year old library.

"I have two small children, I got books, I've got a lot of books, and this is our local library," says library patron Dawn Huffstutler.

She comes to this library once or twice a week. She's not originally from here and says this library is a little different.

"Usually libraries are one level or they have a ramp of some sort to get to," says Huffstutler.

That's one reason the library board president says a new addition is needed. As it stands right now, they could get sued.

"The shelving is not the right height for wheelchairs, the aisles are not big enough for wheelchairs, definitely we want to make it handicap accessible," says library board president Barbara Runyon.

It does not come cheaply though. The library's raised 30-thousand dollars, but needs to borrow two point eight million dollars. If voters approve, it would raise their library tax 17 cents per 100 dollars of assessed value.

"People just aren't as interested in the library as I hoped they might be, but you never know, there's a lot of people who have come up to me and say we are for your library addition," says Runyon.

The referendum failed for the least four years. Runyon hopes this year will be different.

"We were only defeated by about 38 votes, so we're doing better each time," says Runyon.

If the referendum doesn't pass for the fifth time, the library board president says they'll probably look at other ways to try and raise the money, but she's not sure where it could come from.

Besides being handicapped accessible the library addition would have more space for books and meeting rooms.

It would be built on an empty lot next to the current building and connected.

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