**Warning: this is probably going to offend my librarian friends.**
Perhaps every little community in every small town doesn't need a full-service library. Maybe they could survive with a "reading room" or a "technology center" and work cooperatively with a bigger library nearby. I'm not talking about branches. I'm talking about satellite libraries.
My librarian friends will take this moment to point out to me that I propose this because I probably wouldn't have to worry since my library is one of the bigger ones.
But that's not the point. The point is that I'd rather have a library that is really good at a few things and able to rely on the bigger ones to provide more specialized services. Isn't that a pretty solid business model? I think so.
Oh but wait...we'll have all those smaller communities up in arms about their funding going into another community. BUT YOU'LL GET BETTER SERVICE.
What a revolutionary idea! Doing something that will provide better service with better use of the dwindling tax dollars we receive. Maybe librarians could get paid as they should. Maybe they could all have...*gasp*... benefits! Maybe they could combines internal operations like payroll and purchasing and SAVE MONEY. Maybe a smaller library would become a technology center, with more computers and better-trained personnel to help them. Maybe there wouldn't be as many books on their shelves, but it would be logical to arrange book transports once or twice a day to the satellite library.
Doesn't this sound like it would make sense?
I shouldn't be thinking about work on a Sunday...