Notes from your Alta Library

Friday, January 13, 2012

Happy New Year! It seems 2012 arrived without our being aware. After all, it still looks and feels like fall -- no snow, warm temps. Somehow it just doesn't seem right. But we will enjoy it, knowing that winter (when it comes) will be that much shorter.

Have you been to the library lately? There are changes going on, and more are contemplated. When the high school moved in, and the middle school moved out, adjustments had to be made for the school library and the community library. It will take awhile for everything to get squared away, but I think you will be pleased with the end result. We invite suggestions as we go along.

As you know, I am a member of the Alta Library Board, and in the coming months I am going to discuss what that means; what is the function of the board, and how it operates. At present, we have seven members: Joan Curbow (our President), Julia Behm, Rick Wienhold, Dr. Chris Hansen, Sue Boyd, Gretchen Miller and myself. Our Library Director is Raquel Nelson, and the library staff consists of Laurie Huss, Laura Turnquist, Julie Langner, Denise King, and Carolyn Lessmeier.

In Iowa, a public library is established by an ordinance adopted by the city council. The city ordinance for our library states that the Board is made up of seven members, all of whom live within the city limits of the city of Alta. Each member has been appointed by the mayor and approved by the city council. Term of service on the board is six years. Powers and duties of the board include hiring the library director, setting the salaries of the librarian and staff, and exclusive control of all funds allocated for library purposes.

When I first thought of the library board, somehow I had a picture of us sitting around and picking books to be purchased for the library. As you can see, my picture was totally wrong, and I find that serving can be a real challenge. I will delve further into the duties next month.

Now, I would like to make you aware of a few of our newest acquisitions. In books, Karen Robards has a mystery called, "Sleepwalker," and two of our more prolific authors have new stories to tell: James Patterson, "Private #1 Subject" and Dean Koontz, "77 Shadow Street." Also there are new movies -- "Country Strong" (with Gwyneth Paltrow and Tim McGraw), "The Help" (Academy Award nominated), "Cowboys & Aliens", (with Harrison Ford and Daniel Craig), and "Mr. Popper's Penguins." Something for everyone, so enjoy.

Ciao, Joyce