(re: postponement of new Smithers library building project).
Approximately six years ago the Smithers Library embarked on a project to construct a new Smithers Public Library.
Since then there have been several successful steps taken in advancing the project.
Some of those steps include the completion of a new building design concept, preparation of a detailed business case and an endorsement of the project by Smithers Town Council.
In addition, numerous businesses and individuals have donated to the project to move it to this stage.
As a result of a very informative fundraising training workshop, the library Board of Directors set a target, as a first step, to raise one third of the building cost, $1.5 million, in corporate donations.
The board made a considerable fundraising effort over the last 18 months.
To date, primarily due to economic conditions, the board of directors has not been able to secure the corporate support.
The library board of directors is committed to providing the best possible library services to the community and would like to focus its energy towards this goal.
Also, the board recognizes it’s not fair to the community of Smithers to drag a proposed project on when there is not an end in sight.
In recognition of the above, the library board passed the following motion at its regular meeting, March 22, 2012:
“That the Smithers Public Library Board postpone the new library building project due to the current economic climate and the lack of major funding partners.”
The board looks forward to renewing the project in the future with a stronger economy, improved opportunities for federal and provincial government support and continued strong local championship from Smithers Town Council.
The board also supports the new ice arena project being completed, leading to the opportunity to focus community interest on a new library.
All data and design work collected and completed to date will be maintained and be available for future use.
In addition, the board will pursue vigorously any major funding opportunities which may be identified and, if successful, we will be well positioned to quickly move the new library project forward.
The Friends of the Smithers Public Library, the registered non-profit society which collects donations on behalf of the Smithers Public Library, will establish a legally administered trust fund.
The trust fund will hold any money collected to date in support of the construction of a new library. Should more building construction donations occur they will be added to the trust account.
The trust account guarantees the funds remain dedicated to ensure a new library can and will be built.
The library board of directors would like to extend the sincerest thanks to all supporters of the new library building project to date.
The staff of the Smithers Public Library greatly appreciates the ongoing interest the community has shown in construction of a new library.
The efforts to date are not lost, rather they provide the foundation for a future, larger and better library to serve Smithers and the Bulkley Valley.
We look forward to your continued support when it is more appropriate to move this valuable community project forward.
Thank you for your support.
Wally Bergen, Chair
Smithers Public Library Board