YORKTON - The Board of the Yorkton Chamber of Commerce is supportive of Yorkton City Council choosing to abide by the decision it made at the April 24 meeting of council to accept the offer from a local business to purchase the property that currently houses the library.
“We are relieved that a Chamber member will be able to move forward with business expansion plans,” said Vanessa Andres, President of the Yorkton Chamber of Commerce in a release. “This is a positive for the business community.”
However, the Notice of Motion to rescind certain sections of the April 24 resolution so that an alternate location for the Library can be found leaves many unanswered questions, noted the release.
Council’s decision to sell the property currently housing the library is fiscally responsible, stated the Chamber release, noting “.as per the April 24 resolution passed unanimously by Council, the sale meant an infusion of $1.5 million into the city coffers, the collection of property taxes and added efficiencies by housing the library in the Gallagher Centre.”
Now that Council has voted to rescind certain sections of that resolution in order to “direct Administration to investigate alternate options for Library Relocation”, it leaves many unanswered questions, continued the Chamber release:
- To where does Council suggest the Library be relocated?
- Will the city have to purchase or build a building?
- If a building is purchased, what will be the cost of renovations?
- If a building is purchased, how much are the property taxes the city will no longer be collecting?
If, indeed, Council refuses to relocate the library to the Gallagher Centre, many of the financial benefits and efficiencies gained by the sale of 93 Broadway Street West could be lost, the release continued.
“The sale of the property currently housing the library and the relocation of the library to the Gallagher Centre would have been a positive move for the city”, said Andres. “Now, we have no idea as to the costs the taxpayers of the City are facing to locate the Library somewhere other than the Gallagher Centre.”
Another area of concern is what will happen to the Library while the city seeks a new home?
“The Library has been described as the “living room of the community,” said Andres. “By rejecting the Gallagher Centre – at least for the time being - Council now risks closing the Library completely until a new home can be found for it.”
The Chamber recognizes the importance of the Public Library to the community and believes relocating the Library to the Gallagher Centre will ensure its long- term viability to be used and enjoyed by its many patrons.
The purpose of the Yorkton Chamber is to be “the voice of Yorkton and district business community” and represents over 415 members.