Golden Valley library gets push during workshop of county supervisors

The three Mohave County supervisors gave continuing support for a library in Golden Valley, in the works since 1998, during a budget workshop March 17 at the Kingman library branch.

The supervisors rated the proposed library and 11 other items under discussion during the meeting, which lasted nearly three hours.

"I think it is a good idea," District 1 Supervisor Pete Byers of Kingman said after the meeting.

"With me, it will go all the way.

I will push to get it done."

District 2 Supervisor Tom Sockwell of Bullhead City said he has received several letters in favor of opening a library station in Golden Valley.

He added that he may place the library on the agenda for an upcoming meeting of the supervisors.

While expressing support for the library, District 3 Supervisor Buster Johnson said the fate of the proposed library depends on the financial situation of the county library district.

"All of our libraries need to be quality libraries," he said after the meeting.

"I think it is better to expand slowly and have each one of them be a quality library."

Johnson said he is not big on the priority system in which the supervisors were asked to rate the library on a scale from one to 10, adding, "It all goes by money."

The library district is funded by a special district tax of about 32 cents on every $100 in assessed valuation, library Director Bonnie Campbell said.

And in November, former Golden Valley resident Geri Hampton donated $10,000 to pay for a modular building that would house the satellite library.

Campbell said the next step is for the supervisors to schedule a public hearing in April on whether and when to start the station library project.

She said the modular building measures 34 by 64 by 18 feet and was manufactured by a Canadian company.

"It is the shell only," Campbell said.

"We will have to finish off the interior."

Campbell said the library district plans to locate the building on land administered by the federal Bureau of Land Management on North Verde Road, near the Chamber of Commerce office.

The county submitted an application for a recreation and public purpose lease for a six-acre site to the BLM in 1999, said Janna Paronto realty specialist at the Kingman field office of the BLM.

The lease entails no cost to the county, but the county has to put up the library on the property within five years or forfeit that arrangement.

"We went through the process, and I spoke with Bonnie Campbell last year," Paronto said.

She added the BLM needs to fulfill public notice requirements by publishing in the Federal Register and local newspapers.

Campbell said "it's hard to tell" how soon the library would open.

And once it does, it would start at 15 hours a week and offer a selection of books, magazines and other materials as well as computers with Internet access.

Yvonne Meredith, president of the Friends of the Library in Golden Valley, eagerly awaits the opening of the library.

"We just need it badly, and we have been working on it since 1998," she said.

"I think it will bring the community together."

Meredith said the Friends have scheduled a carnival to raise money for the group from noon to 6 p.m.

May 3 at the Stockmen's Bank branch at Highway 68 and Hope Avenue.