Transparency, accountability, responsibilityâ€”actions we all seem to desire from our federal and state governments. Depending upon who you talk to, we are told by our government representatives that we need or donâ€™t need bailouts, tax increases and more spending. Listen to both points of view on the same subject discussed for a half hour and soon you truly do not know who is correct and what they are right about. But the one real truth is that the individual tax payer has little control on exactly how their federal and state tax dollars are being spent today.
On a local level though, we are allowed to have referendums. This great democratic process, allows us to argue a specific question back and forth among ourselves for things that may or may not truly help our own towns and counties. We finalize the question when we choose to vote.
Several years back, over 2,000 voters chose to build the Sugar Grove Public Library but since that time those same voters have not stepped up to vote for the separate referendum required by our state to fund the new library. This library will serve over 15,000 library residents who live in Prestbury and other parts of Aurora, parts of Montgomery, all of the Village of Sugar Grove and most of the Sugar Grove Township residents.
If it is truly transparency, accountability, and responsibility that you want, then it is Sugar Grove Library Director Beverly Holmes Hughes and her staff you should thank for figuring out new convenient patron hours, resolving staffing issues and figuring out how to build a well-laid out, energy efficient, community minded building well within the voters budget.
Meetings regarding every step of building this building were advertised and the public was invited. Every decision made for the new library was done so at public meetings and publically recorded, every dollar spent was accounted for and the bookkeeping is available at the library for anyone who cares to take a look.
So please remember when your federal and state taxes are being increased and the funding for branches of your local government (the library, schools, park districts, fire and police departments, etc.) are further decreased by those who have the power to do so in Springfield and Washington, remember that your local tax dollars are spent by local people you know and trust and the results of their hard work make your community an even better place to live.
Naming opportunities and donations to the collection are available, and needed, now. The current Secretary of State has said that a new library would not be built in Illinois with an operating rate as low as that of the Sugar Grove Library. The operating rateâ€”.08â€”has not been raised in over 30 years, yet people still complain about transparency, accountability, responsibility when it is really still alive and well in your local government!
Sugar Grove Library Friends President