A letter sent to the Burley Public Library Foundation:
We had so much fun on today’s parade entry. The library staff did funny little skits and played silly. These were the characters of Thing 1, Thing 2, and the clown, of course. Olga & Brenda slapped high 5’s with about a million children and got a lot of smiles and cheers. Cari created the vision of our simple little entry and her husband welded and cleaned their ATV and trailer to make it shine.
This was a wonderful event for all of us. People cheered and clapped, reminding us all of the importance of their library in our community. Parents and grandparents made special efforts to point out to their little ones that the characters from Mary Poppins, Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story, Wizard of Oz, Moana, and my own Curious George were passing by. For me, this was exciting and humbling all at the same moment. It’s an honor to be trusted by our incredible community members. We played Jerry’s music clips that had anything to do with books or the library. All of our staff members participated to some degree creating this simple little entry. Just a fun, fun, fun day.
Thank you, BPL Foundation for making this day such a delight!!!!
Perhaps you didn’t know that the Burley Public Library Foundation (BPLF) is a participating Smith’s Community Rewards Organization. This means that every time you shop at Smith’s using your points/rewards card or alternate ID (typically phone number) that Smith’s will make a donation to the BPLF. This does not effect the savings or rewards YOU earn on your purchases!
Years ago Smith’s asked customers to fill out a paper form in their store, indicating which organization you would like to contribute to in your local community. They have now moved the process exclusively online. It still involves filling out a form, but this time it is on their website, rather than on paper.
In order to have Smith’s start giving on your behalf to the Burley Public Library Foundation, you will need to create a digital account with them at their website. Here is the link explains how to quickly and easily create a digital account, and then how to choose the organization you wish to have Smith’s donate to on your behalf: https://www.smithsfoodanddrug.com/topic/community-rewards-5
Our Non-Profit Organization or NPO number with Smith’s is: 25869
You will need to load that number in at the end of the process to indicate which organization you are choosing to support.
Thanks for supporting the Burley Public Library Foundation!
Recently I learned that Governor Otter’s proposal to eliminate the tax on business equipment (the personal property tax), would reduce our Burley Public Library’s property tax revenue by 9.52%. The bulk of our library’s revenue comes from property taxes.
I then went to Idaho State Tax Commission’s Report and found that this proposed cut would damage much more than our library. The property tax revenue to these local units would be cut by the following percentages:
Cassia County 14.61%
Minidoka County 18.39%
City of Burley 9.52%
City of Rupert 23.03%
Cassia County School District 16.23%
Minidoka County School District 18.39%
College of Southern Idaho 10.79%
Other Mini-Cassia cities and property tax-supported entities such as highway and cemetery districts would also receive cuts. (To see the full report go to
http://tax.idaho.gov/n-feed.cfm?idd=358 and click on the link near the bottom of the page that says 2012 Personal Property Tax Analysis.)
Such cuts would either decimate essential services in our area or would force local tax payers to make up the shortfall through the proposed local option tax. The bulk of the money that would be taken from our local area would go to large corporations, which, though they may provide jobs in Idaho, send their profits out of the state. (Small business will no longer have to pay this tax when Idaho’s growth reaches 4% and the law passed in 2008 becomes effective.)
If you are as concerned as I am about what these proposed cuts would do to our local area, please contact our legislators. They are being bombarded by the lobbyists from the large corporations. They need to hear from us.
President, Friends of the Burley Public Library
“Milton Hermon (M.H.) King lost his father to typhoid pneumonia when he was eight. Until he was in the sixth grade, his schooling consisted of a few months of classes in a country school. When his family rented their farm and moved to Fort Scott, Kansas, he was enrolled in school full-time for two years. These were nine-month sessions. After he completed eighth grade, as was the tradition, he started working. His mother found him a good proprietor and he began an apprenticeship at a dry goods store eleven miles away. This was in 1889.”
Thus begins the family account of Lizabeth King’s grandfather, M.H., who in 1915 founded of King’s Variety Store in Burley, Idaho. M. H. King’s son, Hermon E. King, would expand the business to over thirty stores in six western states, primarily Idaho and Utah, and with his wife, Jean, make possible the construction of the King Fine Arts Center in Burley.
How was M.H. able to gain the knowledge that enabled him to start such a successful business? He tried to get as much information as possible from reading, mostly books and magazines from the public library. His reading always had a check mark where he laid it down to go to work, taking it up again when he had some spare moments. Lizabeth continued, “his struggle with and his persistence in educating himself by using libraries explained his keen interest in public libraries, where knowledge, in its many forms, was available to anyone who wanted it.” He, his wife Edith, all his children and his grandchildren were and are life-long learners, due in part to the example he set.
The King family has continued to support libraries, knowing how critical the public library was to their grandfather’s success. Jean King, wife of Hermon, served on the Burley Public Library board for many years. She was a member of the “greatest generation” – people who made possible the construction of the current Burley Public Library building in 1959. Hermon and Jean’s children still continue to support our local library, even though several have moved out of state.
Today some of us in the Mini-Cassia area are aware of how much we owe the King family for helping to build our community. All of us who attend the performances and other activites in the King Fine Arts Center know of its value. But we also need to recognize that we owe a debt to a public library somewhere in the Midwest that enabled M.H. King to advance his early education, and to the Burley Public Library where he continued his studies for the 36 years he lived in our community. With the education that came from public libraries, he established the business that started it all.
(Written by Kathleen Hedberg)
Recently a friend visiting from Boise asked me what I liked about living in Burley. I replied that Burley is a city where many people give their time, talents and resources to improve the community. We are fortunate to live in such a city. Now we, the citizens of Burley, have an opportunity to pass this legacy on to future generations by voting to have a much needed new library.
If we were to ask local citizens what they feel about having a new library, I’m sure we would hear a variety of answers. I would like to share with you some of my observations and feelings. Our library reflects the heart of our community. It is a place where people of all ages, backgrounds and interests gather to learn, to imagine, to communicate, to improve, to relax and to share. To some, it is like a home away from home, a place to be with others, a place to have time alone.
Former First Lady Barbara Bush said, “Libraries and librarians have definitely changed my life and the lives of countless other Americans. They deserve the support and patronage of every single one of us who values education.”
The need for a new library has been well established. On May 15th, we have the privilege of voting. Let us continue the wonderful legacy of giving to present and future generations. Please join Mayor Greenman and me. Vote YES for a new library.
As Friends of the Burley Public Library, we are excited about the proposed new library building. The proposed new library building will address many needs while providing greater efficiencies. There will be adequate space and separate areas for children, young adults, students needing to study, people using computers, and others wanting to read and relax. The space is configured so that the librarians can see all these areas from the front desk, making the library easy to monitor.
The book processing area will be directly behind the front desk, so that librarians can quickly move from book processing to helping patrons. A great bonus for our both our Friends group and the librarians is that they and we will not have to be constantly moving chairs and tables whenever we have a book sale, program, or exhibit.
The community room at our current library is continually in demand for meeting space even though it can only hold about thirty adults. (More children crowd in for Story Time.) The new library will have a community room that will hold one hundred people with sliding doors to divide it into two rooms for smaller groups. It will have an outside door, making it accessible when the library is closed. These are only a few of the improvements that will benefit our community.
With interest on the proposed library bond at 2.79%–probably as low as it will ever be–this is a great opportunity for our community to get a larger, more efficient library building.
For the average homeowner, the cost of this new library will be $2.11 per month, which is less than $26 per year. One hardback book costs more than that, and a tank of gas costs a lot more.
We urge you to vote in the primary election on May 13. Vote “In Favor of” the general obligation bond that will fund our new Burley Public Library.
President, Friends of the Burley Public Library
Laurie Welch’s library photo displayed on the front page of the Times-News Mini-Cassia publication (Feb. 29) tells the story! The photo shows a mother sharing – emphasis on sharing – a book with her young son, an opportunity made available to both of them by the Burley Public Library.
There are multi-layered concepts projected by this photo, probably one of the most important is that of intra-personal communication, not seen often enough in this age of digital conversation. If you have ever watched a young child enjoying the experience of holding a book, sharing a book with another, you will understand the significance of a facility which allows this to happen.
A library, such as Burley’s, offers many opportunities to persons of all ages to participate in the culture of sharing – besides the pleasure of sharing a vis-a-vis conversation with another human being, ideas are generated, political debates made available to the public and the study of humanities are offered, currently one from the Smithsonian Institution – the definition of both a local and a universal culture.
And yes, there are computers available to those who may not be able to access the devices in their own homes but yet want to be able to take advantage of services offered by the digital medium.
Obviously, the current library has outgrown its quarters, and is attempting to have a bond issue for a new facility put on the ballet by the City Council during its March 7 meeting. There have already been private funds offered to the City by the Burley Lions Club ($100,000) and by an anonymous donor ($350,000,) all contingent upon the passage of the library bond issue, an offer we can’t refuse!
The plan is to construct the new library in the immediate vicinity of several upper-division schools, including the CSI Burley campus. The students from the adjacent Cassia H.S. are excited to think that they will have a real library to access. They put a high value on such a privilege.
Many defend the presence of the Burley Golf Course as an “asset to our city.” Imagine what an asset a beautiful, functional library would be – a true definition of a culture, as it was in ancient Ephesus and Alexandria – guardians of otherwise lost cultures.
We will devoutly hope that the citizens of Burley and those who represent them will consider all arguments being given for a library, one which can define Burley’s culture as no other facility can. Let’s show the world who we are.
Sarah M. Blasius
I remember as a young child standing in the middle of a library, overwhelmed by the rows and rows of books that towered high above my head. I loved the smell of waxed wooden floors and glue. And mostly I loved that I could read any of them that I wanted to! Later as we were in high school and college, many late nights were spent at long wooden tables, laden with the books we’d found to search for information that would amaze our teachers and professors. We didn’t have to own all of the high tech gadgets because the library could help us access whatever we needed. Now, we enjoy bringing our grandchildren to browse the picture book section and visit the story time lady, or find a book to take along for the drive to a distant destination—something we can “get lost” in to help the miles melt away.
The world has become smaller through modern technology, and keeping up is a constant challenge. Though our library staff juggles to the best of their ability, our library is sadly outdated and its resources stretched to the point of breaking. Of course, choosing fund allocation in our community is always a difficult decision when there are so many worthy projects needing to be considered. If we look down the road to see which of these projects will have lasting value for our community, we believe that a new library is one such project that will bring our town in line with the future. Voting for the new library will be held May 15, but if you are unable to do so then, you may vote at the courthouse from now through May 11.
We are voting in favor of the new library, and we hope that you will consider doing so as well.
Steve and Sherry Ormond
April 15, 2012
Dear Citizens of Burley,
Soon you will have an opportunity to build a wonderful asset for the community. A new Burley Public Library will provide the opportunity to expand many of the existing programs which lead to the increased literacy of our population (Story Time) as well as travelling exhibits which expand our knowledge of the world around us (Smithsonian exhibits.)
The increased usage of the library has put a huge demand on staff and facilities. We want this resource to continue to provide the latest in research materials, the latest fiction, large print materials, bi-lingual materials as well as Internet access to government forms, job applications and school texts.
After turning on their water and electricity, the library is one of the first public buildings a newcomer to Burley may visit, for they know they can find answers to many questions about our area there. They want the answers made quickly available in surroundings easy to navigate and pleasant for staff and visitors to utilize.
The new facility being adjacent to the CSI campus can only be a plus for both the college and the city. New businesses looking at our area, retirees desiring to return to their birthplace and those looking for a small community atmosphere to raise a family will find additional benefit from the synergy of having the 2 facilities next door to each other. The two will complement each other nicely and help our reputation as a progressive community.
Although I do not live within the city limits, I have always held a library card for I found the cost to be, at most, the same as buying 3 books per year. Since retiring I serve as a library volunteer and I see how the staff must juggle to accommodate all the children when the weather is bad. I’ve seen how crowded the place is during political panels with people peering around columns and shelves to see the speakers. It would be great if there was room or a way to enlarge the current library, but that has been done to the extent that it can be. It is time for a new library in a more useful location. I encourage you to vote “YES” at the upcoming election.
Sheila B. Adams