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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Do the Residents of Bloomfield Hills really want a Library ? Part 1

The City asked that question once  via the Planning Commission's  Master Plan Task Force Residents survey.The survey which included many topics was completed in the Spring of 2008, five years after the break with the Bloomfield Township Public Library and one year before the first of three library millage issue which would further reveal public opinion. The four questions asked were....

1)The city should negotiate with the Bloomfield Township library to allow city residents to borrow its books.

42.2%  Strongly Agreed 21.1% Agreed 14.2%  Disagreed 15.3%  Strongly Disagreed  7.1% Had no Opinion

Author's Note: What is interesting here is that  that close to 40% either had no opinion or were opposed to negotiations entirely. The 63.1 % agreed number would drop drastically when the topic of money was introduced. Surveys traditionally report that people queried  love children, puppy dogs, libraries and  housing for low income individuals but that love does not  necessarily translate into action.

2)City residents should vote whether to increase their millage to pay taxes to the township library to allow city residents to borrow books .

29.7% Strongly Agreed 24.5%  Agreed 18.8%   Disagreed  21.4%  Strongly Disagreed  5.7% had no opinion.

Author's Note: The Question is clear the answer is not. 54.5% say get our OK before you do anything.  45% seem to say that a prior OK is not necessary or they have no opinion on the matter. In early 2008 times were good but not that good. Maybe the 40% who disagreed or strongly disagreed were disagreeing to increasing their millage or holding an election do so.

3)The city should not negotiate with the township library to borrow books or vote to pay taxes to the township library to borrow books unless the library allows the city to verify what it actually costs the library to lend books to city residents.

 40% Strongly Agreed 24.2% Agreed 11.8%   Disagreed  13.9%   Strongly Disagreed  10% had no opinion.1100% has .7% had n
Author's note: A great idea which no library has ever supported. 64.2 % said great idea. 26% percent said they'd let it slide and 10% had no opinion.     

4)The city should continue the agreement with the Troy public library to allow city residents to borrow its books.
   32.6% Strongly Agreed 30 % Agreed10.9% Disagreed  14.8 % Strongly Disagreed  14.8% had no opinion

Authors Note: 15 % no opinion rings true. Probably people who never got to the Troy Library. 26% disagreeing probably also reflects an accurate number of residents who found the Troy library inconveniently distant  or of lesser stature than the Township Library. In 2008 the Township library was completing massive remodel. A similar one planned for Troy was put hold due to budget constraints. The 63%  who "agreed" were probably puppy dog lovers who's number totally dwarfed the number of residents who actually used the Troy Library.  The TPL annual usage from the City was in the hundreds. 63% of the City of Bloomfield Hills is approximately in excess 2,500

In short the only recent, written, and professionally compiled survey on the subject of  expanded library participation for the City of Bloomfield Hills revealed something far less than a ringing endorsement. To be continued...

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