The following is a message I emailed to the mayor and city council of North Las Vegas this morning:
Dear Mayor Montandon and City Council Leaders:
I encountered a rude shock when attempting to check out two books at the Clark County Library yesterday. The librarian informed me that the North Las Vegas Library District and the Las Vegas Clark County Library District had now merged and that, as a resident of North Las Vegas, I could no longer enjoy the privileges of LVCCLD library patrons. Because of this merger, I am now allowed to check out far fewer items, for a shorter length of time, and will be bound by North Las Vegas’s far more draconian late fee policy.
The librarian had no printed material to give me about this change. I went home and checked the websites for both districts, but nothing was mentioned on either one. I receive email from the library regularly, but no announcement had come my way. Why was this process conducted so secretly? Why did this Las Vegas librarian have to apologize for North Las Vegas’s decisions?
More importantly, if the two library districts have merged, why do they have differing policies at all? If they’re going to be linked together, shouldn’t their patron policies be the same?
Or are residents of North Las Vegas to be treated as second-class citizens at libraries now? How many people will approach the circulation desk at Rainbow Library or West Sahara Library and be told that they must pay the fines that most other residents in the valley can defer, that they can only check out a fraction of the items that every one else in line may borrow, and that those items must be returned sooner? Why are we to all be embarrassed by this implied inferiority?
This is the first time I’ve ever regretted moving to North Las Vegas.
I call upon all involved to rectify this sad situation by having the North Las Vegas Library District immediately adopt the same patron policies as the Las Vegas Clark County Library District. If this matter is not quickly resolved, I intend to appear at the July 16 North Las Vegas City Council meeting to discuss it further.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter, and thank you in advance for acting to make North Las Vegas the equal of any other part of Southern Nevada.
Jamie J. Huston
This is not facetious: the library is a large part of my life and I take my library usage very seriously. I find this bit of bizarre skulduggery to be grossly outrageous. Anyone else with an interest in the matter is encouraged to also contact the city council and voice your disgust. I hope to get positive results to this farce soon.