Letter to the Editor: Library Funding

Dear Editor:

Every year that we have lived in Natchitoches Parish, people have complained about roads and taxes.  Voters do not vote for tax increases for roads, therefore there is no money for road repair or construction of new roads. A vote for a tax to rebuild roads has failed 18 times in Natchitoches Parish.

Now the parish council sees the library,  an institution that has served our community with books, technology, digital music, TV, movies, and magazine articles, music programs, art classes, reading lessons, yoga instruction, and dance, as an unnecessary resource.

Our public library has been frugal with its funds, preparing to “live”  on the taxes designated for and collected from the previous year, yet it provides, quality, acceptable, free, service. Their budget is set at 8 mils.  A mil is 1/10 of a penny or 1/1000 of a dollar This mite is free and clear for 2023 because the library saved the money to provide for the next year so they would not have to beg a governing body to raise taxes or fund their survival in the future. 

No begging and no bake sales.  They planned.

Has the parish council even designated the 4 mils they will take from library funds to a project?   Do they have a plan?  Will this money go to the  undone road work everyone complains about?  In Louisiana repairing an existing rural road costs between $750,000 and $1,200,000 per mile.  A new road costs between 3 and 4 million per mile.

How can reassigning library funds be worth  a fraction of a road? Consider voting “no” in April to the reassignment of library funds to the parish council.  

Sharon Huey

Letters to the editor do not necessarily reflect the thoughts and opinions of the Natchitoches Parish Journal and its staff. The NPJ reserves the right to decline publishing submitted Letters to the Editor on a letter-by-letter basis. Letters to the Editor can be submitted via email to NPJNatLa@gmail.com.