Archive for Thursday, February 9, 2017

Letters to the editor: New Tonganoxie library needed; Former board member favors new library

February 9, 2017

Editor’s note: The mail-in ballot question for Tonganoxie residents that is due back to the Leavenworth County Clerk’s Office by Feb. 28 asks whether the city should replace the current 3/4-cent sales tax for the Tonganoxie Water Park that is set to expire with a 20-year tax at the same rate. The tax would go toward building a new library, as well as infrastructure projects. There is a possibility that ground will be available on the former Tonganoxie Elementary School campus for a new library, but that is not yet settled.


To the editor:

In the 18 years we’ve lived and raised a family here, I’ve become

increasingly proud of this great community. I’ve seen so many people generously and consistently give their time, skills and enthusiasm to improving it. We have a lot to be proud of. In 18 years, the investments have been steady and visible.

Today, we have an opportunity to make another key investment. You may already have received a ballot regarding a proposed 3/4- cent sales tax to replace the expiring pool tax. Some of the funds will be used to build a library that better meets the needs we see every day.

Who does the library serve? You might be surprised: busy, curious children, young parents, early readers, adolescents who need a safe, positive place to go, teens without internet access, adults applying for jobs and taking tests, seniors socializing at bingo and getting help with technology and so many readers. The library lends thousands of books every month.

Our library — a rare truly public space — was built when the population was less than half of today’s. Increasingly it’s hampered by a lack of space, for activities, technology and materials. A future library will address these needs, with an emphasis on rooms for public use and sharing this community’s rich history.

Let’s honor our past by ensuring Tonganoxie continues to be strong moving forward. Our taxes will not increase. And the money will be spent thoughtfully, with your input. I hope you’ll join me in voting yes.

Lajean Rau-Keene,



To the editor:

I am writing to urge everyone to vote for the replacement of the soon-to-expire 3/4-cent city sales tax in order to build a new Tonganoxie Public Library and improve our streets and bridges.

As a former member of the library board I know we need more library and parking space for the people of our growing city.

A building at the former Tonganoxie Elementary School site where my grandson and many others learned to read would connect us to our proud educational heritage.

Laurence M. Hill,



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