By Chad Ingram
Published Nov. 22 2018
What will become of the Dorset branch of the Haliburton County PublicLibrary will be a decision for the next Algonquin Highlands council.
Councillors officially deferred that decision during a Nov. 15 meeting.
For more than a year councillors have been discussing the possibility ofturning the area within the Dorset Recreation Centre that has housed the library branch into a multi-use space. Circulation figures from thebranch which is open eight hours a week are low and there has beendiscussion of providing a book-drop service where residents could still pick up and drop off books ordered from the library. That sort of model would mean there would no longer be books on shelves to peruse perse.
In a survey the township conducted regarding the facility during thesummer 76 per cent of respondents said they supported the concept of abook-drop service and 70 per cent said they supported the idea oftownship-run community hub space in the area that has housed the Dorset branch of the county library. Such a hub would be open 40 hours perweek the same as the rec centre.
During last week’s meeting councillors accepted an updated version of thesurvey results which included some public comments that had not beenincluded in a previous draft due to a discrepancy between the online and paper versions of the survey.
As they come to the end of their four-year term councillors agreed to leave the matter in the hands of the incoming council.
“My understanding from the previous meeting is that this decision would becarried to the next council” said Mayor Carol Moffatt. “Is that whatthis council wants to do?”
Councillors nodded in agreement.
Three of the five members of Algonquin Highlands will remain the same in thenew term with Moffatt and Ward 2 councillors Lisa Barry and LizDanielsen each reclaiming their seats by acclamation.
New councillors will be Julia Shortreed in Ward 1 and Jennifer Dailloux in Ward 3.