GREENCASTLE -- The Putnam County Public Library is looking to extend its branches into the northern and southern parts of the county. Through the Putnam County Community Foundation Envision 2011 grant, PCPL is hoping to create a branch in Bainbridge and Cloverdale.
"The main problem is sustainability," said director Alice Greenburg during the regular board meeting Wednesday.
Greenburg said the $100,000 grant would certainly get the branches off to a good start, but the question is whether or not PCPL could afford to sustain them. Board member Dorothy Lukenbill felt the library could not turn away from the opportunity.
"It's what we do as a library, provide literacy to the county," she said.
With two additional branches, PCPL could reach readers who are otherwise unreachable. Board members, with the exception of Ken Heeke and Vicki Timm due to conflicts of interest, voted to move forward with the important project by continuing work on the grant.
Greenburg announced the library is still showing a slight decline in its circulation and the problem seems to lie in the children's department.
"I'm not sure why," Greenburg told board members. "It's mostly in the picture books."
In addition, there has been a decline in numbers for storytime. Greenburg said the staff has tried doing more with displays, weeding out books and working on shelving, but the decrease continues.
Among their votes, board members agreed to purchase a database called Reference USA for $2,700 per year. Library cardholders will be able to access Reference USA through the PCPL Web site and search for any business, even new businesses, and residences in the United States.
Some of its features include searching a company's corporate ladder or refining searches for a particular business or market. Reference USA will be added to the library's other databases and will even be accessible to patrons from their home computers.
In other business:
* PCPL joined libraries all over Indiana participating in Snapshot Day, which was a national promotion during National Library Week. The purpose of Snapshot was to show what people do at public libraries on a typical day.
Patrons were asked to fill out a small survey asking what they did during their visit, which included getting a library card, job searching, research, reading, program or meeting, volunteering, check out materials, use the internet or utilize the wireless internet.
"I feel very fortunate to live so close to the very welcoming and well staffed/stocked public library. I use the library about two times a week. I also appreciate the convenience of online account management. Thank you to all," one patron commented on the survey.
The other comments included raves about the staff, the library's collection and its "great environment." All in all, 43 patrons completed the Snapshot form. Results and pictures will be posted online after May 1 at www.snapshot.library.in.gov.
* Mark Hammer, CPA with Hammer and Company, told board members the library hasn't had to borrow money from any other funds this year to cover operating costs, which has been done in past years.
* D&S Tree Service will remove a Maple tree on the library's property line due to its roots interfering with the storm sewer.