Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Candidate For PPL Directorship Shares Views At Public Forum

Elaine Dunne-Thayer.

PLATTSBURGH CITY - June 19, 2012

It's refreshing to hear someone simply say "I don't know" instead of dancing around an issue or bloviating a pseudo-answer.

Today at a noontime public forum a candidate for the directorship of the Plattsburgh Public Library was asked by a certain blogger (ahem) about what she thought about PPL becoming a school district or special district library to deal with its budget problems.

The candidate, Elaine Dunne-Thayer, said she was aware of other libraries operating with such districts but she wasn't familiar enough with the local library to say whether or not such options would work for PPL.

Elaine did offer her own takes on the question of what the future holds for public libraries.  She stressed that community outreach was important and that all groups, from children to senior citizens, should be aware of the services a library offers.

One way to reach out to the community would be lending out e-book readers so that people would be given the opportunity to try out the new medium.  She stressed that both hardcopy books and e-publications could co-exist in a library setting.

Elaine is a youth services librarian at the Massena Public Library.  MPL has been in the news for some issues that recently flared up.  After everyone on the board resigned except one trustee, MPL had to close for three days last week.  Library Journal published an online article detailing the train wreck.

As the Library Journal and other news sources have reported, some were advocating for Elaine Dunne-Thayer to become the next director at the Massena Library.  My impression is that personalities clashed and she was simply caught in the middle.

When the question of the problems at MPL was raised, Elaine replied that it seemed the situation was improving and she was hoping for the best.

The forum was held in the Plattsburgh Public Library's second story auditorium  where next week another candidate, Connie Dalrymple, will be making her presentation.  That forum is scheduled for Tuesday, June 26, from noon to 12:45 PM.   The public is invited to attend.

PPL reference librarian Colleen Pellitier made her own presentation back in April and is still a candidate for the directorship.  New candidates are being considered after a finalist dropped out during the first round.

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