Public Watchdog.org

A Valedictory Address Worth Watching

09.21.15

In our last post we wrote about how the Park Ridge Library Board was enhancing its transparency and accountability by broadcasting its meetings live on WOW and posting the videotape on its website.

Little did we know that the very first televised meeting last Tuesday (09.15.15) would provide such a wonderful teaching moment, compliments of the departing Children’s Dept. Service Mgr., Kelly Durov – whose valedictory address (starting at the 17:35 mark of the meeting video)

illustrates a number of the things about the Library and local government generally that need to be changed and corrected if local government facilities and services are going to improve to where they should be.

The main premise of Ms. Durov’s remarks was that she would have preferred to have continued adding to her “longevity” at our Library but that “[t]here are some real issues that made leaving [her] job, a job that [she] loved, a reality.”

Whenever you hear public employees (or their union reps) talk about how much they “love” their jobs, you can be pretty sure they’re talking about the pay, the constitutionally-guaranteed pension that they often take years earlier than Social Security kicks in for the rest of us, the lack of accountability, the virtual inability to be fired, the virtual certainty their employer won’t pack up and move to Indiana or Guadalajara, or various other advantages they have over private employees.

And Ms. Durov didn’t disappoint.

“It would be disingenuous for me to say that salary were not a large part of my decision to leave.“

You’ll note that Ms. Durov didn’t say what her current salary is, how much she will be getting at her new job, or how many more Benjamins in her pay envelope would have persuaded her to stay. That wouldn’t have fit into her anti-Library Board narrative.

Similarly, while she applauded Director Janet Van De Carr’s “strong leadership,” she curiously forgot to mention that it is Ms. Van De Carr – and not the Library Board – who has full authority over all employees’ raises, including Ms. Durov’s. Nor did she mention whether she even asked Ms. Van De Carr for a raise, or whether she was turned down.

That wouldn’t have fit into her anti-Board narrative, either.

Fortunately for anyone looking to understand the true priorities of many public employees, Ms. Durov didn’t stop after having expressed the primacy of her pay check.

“I would urge the Library Board…to respect the management of the Library to set goals for our staff that will better the Library and the community, and to trust us when we deem those goals have been achieved.”

In other words, the Library Board should see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil – but just let “management” (a/k/a, Ms. Van De Carr) continue to do whatever it darn well pleases, at whatever cost and to whatever effect. And then the Board should let Staff decide for itself how good a job it’s doing.

Yes, folks, that IS the inmates running the asylum.

In Ms. Durov’s bureaucrats-gone-wild world, that means rejecting “squishy numbers such as circulation and door count” and embracing whatever un-measurable warm-and-fuzzies make Staff less accountable while also boosting its self-esteem – even as a metric like “circulation” (how many books and other items are checked out, so how “squishy” can that number be?) is at its lowest level since FY2007-08, down more than 112,000 items from its FY2012-13 high; and a metric like “door count”(how many patrons physically visit the Library, which IS a “squishy” number because management and Staff want it that way) is at its lowest level in at least a decade, down almost 115,000 from its FY2009-10 high.

But, bless her, Ms. Durov didn’t stop there, either.

“My integrity as a librarian has been compromised as we have implemented user fees, stopped supporting Food for Fines, and now are examining charging people to use Library space.”

Ironically, each of those three things Ms. Durov criticized was intended to make more non-tax dollars available for Library use, and they have done so – two facts that also didn’t fit into her narrative. More importantly, none of those three things implicates her actual “librarian” duties, although we confess to having no knowledge of any code of librarian “integrity” and couldn’t find one with a quick Google search.

If there is such a thing as librarian “integrity,” however, we would have expected it to have been severely “compromised” when Ms. Durov’s favorite director and a previous library board of bobbleheaded rubber-stampers decided to close the Library on Sundays during summer 2014 as a political stunt to embarrass the City Council and enrage the citizenry into coercing the Council into giving the Library more money, thereby avoiding the referendum that the Council nevertheless thrust upon a reluctant and unappreciative director, Staff and board.

But neither Ms. Durov nor ANY of her fellow Library Staffers showed up at any Board meeting to voice even the slightest complaint or objection to locking out all those patrons who regularly made Sundays the Library ‘s single busiest day of the week, based on average per-hour attendance.

That’s because when one cuts through all the bogus rhetoric, the Library’s “patrons” are little more than props that employees like Ms. Durov use for their own purposes, like arguing for more money in their pockets. So invoking the welfare of the Library’s patrons is just empty lip service designed to sucker those patrons into thinking that many/most(?) Staff members aren’t just mercenaries.

And thanks to a small-but-vocal minority of easily-bamboozled patrons and a complicit local press, that tactic usually works…until someone like Ms. Durov shows her true colors, captured on video, before selling herself to a higher bidder.

As the fictional Vincent “Vinny” Gambini might say: “Thank you, Ms. Durov. You’ve been a lovely, lovely witness.”

Robert J. Trizna

Editor and publisher

Member, Park Ridge Library Board

To read or post comments, click on title.

54 comments so far

Once again you have said what needs to be said. If I remember correctly that Enright woman ripped you for saying that library employees were free to leave if they thought they could get a better deal elsewhere. I wonder what her response to this will be now that Ms. Durov has gone elsewhere because she got stiffed on money by Ms. Van De Carr?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Good question. The easy answer is that she will blame the Board for not giving Ms. Van De Carr the $43K salary increase pool she wanted and, instead, giving her only a $25K bonus pool. Followed by a lot of ad hominem insults.

We can’t wait!

“Once again you have said what needs to be said. If I remember correctly that Enright woman ripped you for saying that library employees were free to leave if they thought they could get a better deal elsewhere. I wonder what her response to this will be now that Ms. Durov has gone elsewhere because she got stiffed on money by Ms. Van De Carr?”

Well actually that Enright woman (me) would say that you didn’t listen to Kelly’s words very carefully you hear that she said that while salary were one of the issues, there were many issues that led to her decision to leave. She also indicated performances of the staff being degraded (in large part by the editor of this blog who likes to lie about the staff such as the lies he spreads about staff wanting to say f.u. to the patrons by closing Sundays. That was a complete fabrication). She also mentioned her integrity as a librarian being compromised because of all the users fees being encouraged and implemented by the board who seem more interested in turning the library into an auto-mat as opposed to being good stewards of a public library. She then went into the fact that we do have issues in the library that need attending but that important issues are being pushed to the wayside in favor of these money-making schemes the board seems more interested in chasing.

So listening to it again, I hear a number of reasons, not just salary, as factors in her decision. And indeed it’s possible that she decided the salary she was making didn’t warrant the crap attitude she had to put up with from certain members of the board. Perhaps of the board showed the staff a little more respect, she might have stayed despite the money issue. But then why stay at a library where you have the vice president of the board spitting out lies about the staff on his personal blog? Why stay at a library where the board doesn’t even make an effort to get to know the staff let alone how the library is run on a daily basis? Why stay at a library where the board is making a laughingstock of the library with foolish decisions, and classless comments made by certain board members?

Well heck, consider the board’s performance in this piece posted here. Whatever their thoughts were on what Kelly had to say (and it’s not hard to imagine what their thoughts were) was it really too much to show a little class and at least thank her for her service and wish her well. Not one of them had anything to say to her after her speech.

That shows so much, it really does.

So perhaps, Anonymous, you should actually listen to what Kelly has to say and comment accordingly. But then…that doesn’t fit in with the narrative you and Mr. T want to put out there.

As for ad hominem insults Mr. Trizna, really? Did you read what you wrote in this column? Did you read the nonsense you spewed against staff in the last post? Here let me refresh your memory:

“If there is such a thing as librarian “integrity,” however,” (you could have asked her about this at the board meeting, but that would have meant communicating with a staffmember and we can’t have that, can we Mr. Board VP?

“we would have expected it to have been severely “compromised” when Ms. Durov’s favorite director and a previous library board of bobbleheaded rubber-stampers decided to close the Library on Sundays during summer 2014 as a political stunt to embarrass the City Council and enrage the citizenry into coercing the Council into giving the Library more money, thereby avoiding the referendum that the Council nevertheless thrust upon a reluctant and unappreciative director, Staff and board.

But neither Ms. Durov nor ANY of her fellow Library Staffers showed up at any Board meeting to voice even the slightest complaint or objection to locking out all those patrons who regularly made Sundays the Library ‘s single busiest day of the week, based on average per-hour attendance.”

The editor of this blog is the KING of ad hominem insults. I bow to your majesty’s talent.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Wrong again, Ms. Enright, although never in doubt.

This editor listened raptly to Ms. Durov’s every word because, unlike you, he was in that room when she spoke them; and then he listened to them several more times on the video to make sure he heard them correctly. So either you’ve got terribly bad hearing or, far more likely, you’re once again telling another Big Lie – because Ms. Durov clearly said that salary was “a large part” of her decision, not merely “one of the issues.”

But we’ve come to expect lies and revisionist history from a mercenary who already has taken, and continues to take, far more money OUT of the Library in easy wages than you will ever pay INTO it in taxes.

As for “librarian integrity,” please send us a copy of whatever such code condones Library patrons, hours and service being thrown under the bus so that certain employees could get raises behind Library doors locked tight on the single busiest day of the week.

And thanks for writing – because you, too, make a lovely, lovely witness.

PW, you’ve always talked about people being free to take the best deal available, so why are you begrudging Durov a better job for more money? Sounnds inconsistent to me.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We aren’t “begrudging” Ms. Durov a better job or more money. We wish her well. And we are extremely grateful for her valedictory.

Once again you whacked the hornet’s next, Dog. Or to mix my metaphors, you have pointed out that the emperors (public employees) are wearing no clothes but want the tax payers to believe their clothes are resplendent.

EDITOR’S NOTE: That’s not quite the message, anon.

What we keep pointing out is that public employees – in this case Library employees, but it’s almost exactly the same for teachers – tend to wrap themselves in a mantle of selflessness when, at the end of the day, it’s still all about the paycheck. Nothing wrong with that, mind you, so long as they’re willing to own the self-interest rather than perpetuate the charade.

Kelly Durov loved her job and did not do it just for the money but more for the patrons, especially the children. THat’s why she did this job for so many years in spite of the pay, something you obviously disrespect. And you obviously don’t go to the library or know anything about it, otherwise you would not be saying that Jan Van De Carr controls what employees get paid when it is you and the rest of the library board that does that.

EDITOR’S NOTE: That’s just plain WRONG.

For the past four years this editor has served on the Library Board, not once has it made any hiring, firing or compensation decision for any employee EXCEPT Director Van De Carr.

To the best of this Board member’s knowledge and recollection, Ms. Van De Carr has never even shared with the Board Ms. Durov’s – or any other employee’s, by name – compensation, or consulted with us on promotions, demotions or reassignments.

So if Ms. Durov wasn’t being paid what she deserved (or what she believed she deserved), that’s between her and Ms. Van De Carr. Because none of us on the Board were consulted on it.

I think the problem with too many librarians and just plain library employees is that they have convinced themselves that THEY are “the library” and are more important than the building, the books, the computers, etc. With that attitude their raises, hours and working conditions become paramount, and anybody (like you and your fellow library board members) who don’t bow to them are disrespecting them and, by extension, the library itself. A pretty screwed up way to look at things, but they have gotten away with it for so long they probably can’t see it any differently. Any chance they will hang you in effigy? 🙂

EDITOR’S NOTE: Their priorities are just a little skewed because a building and books is a library or a bookstore, but librarians without both is neither.

Anonymous wrote: “I think the problem with too many librarians and just plain library employees is that they have convinced themselves that THEY are “the library” and are more important than the building, the books, the computers, etc. With that attitude their raises, hours and working conditions become paramount, and anybody (like you and your fellow library board members) who don’t bow to them are disrespecting them and, by extension, the library itself.”

Actually the reason a lot of library employees feel they are important to the library is because they’re the ones who deal with the patrons on a regular basis (something the library board would know little about and don’t seem overly interested in discussing with staff). We know the job, the community and the people of the community in a way that a library board doesn’t. That’s just the nature of the beast. A reality this board doesn’t seem interested in honoring in any way, shape or form. Okay, so we don’t get raises, fine (this is hardly the first job where I stayed on despite the pay. I like the job). It would be nice if we also didn’t get stabbed in the back by the board, particular one member who lies about us continuously on his blog.

So there is that to consider. But then disrespecting employees, whether public or private has been an attitude that has been growing in this company for a couple of decades now (well some could even argue that it started in the 80s). It’s certainly been encouraged on this blog. I’ve worked in both public and private sectors and it’s often times equal. Employers are forgetting about the contribution employees make to the business or organization. Instead, employees are used as scapegoats. People to fire if the profits go down and the CEOs are at risk of losing their bonuses, or people to blame as the reason taxes are high (as the editor of this blog does). The narrative is spun (and Mr. T. is quite accomplished at spinning) that the it’s all about the greed of the employee and if the employee doesn’t like the lousy treatment, then they’re just being ungrateful and can move on to another job (no matter how matter how many years and much dedication the employee gave).

As I state, this is an attitude that has been encouraged and one that is detrimental to the health of this country. It’s unfortunate.

Oh and by the way, Mr. T, a librarian without books and a building is still a librarian because of the degree. Just as the lack of a practice or a courtroom doesn’t take away the JD degree from the lawyer. I would think you would know that being a member of a library board.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Unfortunately for our community, you and the rest of Staff who are so “important” because they “know the job, the community and the people of the community in a way that a library board doesn’t” have been doing such a half-baked job with that special knowledge that circulation is down big, attendance is down big, program attendance is down big, and library card holdership is stagnant. And that’s just for starters.

As for your class warfare babbling, you and “Class Warrior” Mary Wynn Ryan should consider carpooling to the next Bernie Sanders rally.

No, a librarian without a library is likely unemployed. And a lawyer with a JD but no license isn’t really a lawyer. But since you seem overmatched by the “librarian” side of the equation, I don’t expect you to understand the “lawyer” side.

Anonymous wrote: “I wonder what her response to this will be now that Ms. Durov has gone elsewhere because she got stiffed on money by Ms. Van De Carr?”

Laura Enright wrote: “Well actually that Enright woman (me) would say that you didn’t listen to Kelly’s words very carefully you hear that she said that while salary were one of the issues, there were many issues that led to her decision to leave.”

Mr. T wrote: “So either you’ve got terribly bad hearing or, far more likely, you’re once again telling another Big Lie – because Ms. Durov clearly said that salary was “a large part” of her decision, not merely “one of the issues.””

No I listened to it too and she clearly says that while it is admittedly a large part of her decision. She also explains other things that are making her continued work at PRPL difficult (which you then fluff off in this blog) which led to her decision to leave a job she obviously liked.

So while I never state that she didn’t bring up money, I also stated that she brought up other issues that the board is responsible.

But I did have a long comment so maybe you just breezed through it.

I did find this interesting in your response: My response was to a comment made by Anonymous (in fact I call Anonymous out by…well name). In fact I wrote: “So perhaps, Anonymous, you should actually listen to what Kelly has to say and comment accordingly.”

Yet Mr. T. wrote: “This editor listened raptly to Ms. Durov’s every word because, unlike you, he was in that room when she spoke them; and then he listened to them several more times on the video to make sure he heard them correctly.”

A curiously personal response to a response I was making to an anonymous poster on your blog.

Could it be that you yourself are the “Anonymous” who made that response?

Of course it doesn’t matter cause we all know your agenda.

EDITOR’S NOTE: I should have “breezed through” your comment, more because of its shallowness and silliness, than because of its length. But I persevered through every single foible and folly, thank you very little.

Because you misrepresented Ms. Durov’s comment, I took the liberty of pointing that out without waiting for whatever particular “Anonymous” to do so. As for your quasi-conspiracy theory, you might want to loosen your tin-foil hat or at least go out and buy yourself 40 or 50 copies of “The Catcher In The Rye.”

My “agenda” is simple, and includes: (a) keeping the Library’s doors open; (b) eliminating irresponsible deficit spending and unaccountability; (c) ending chronic neglect of the Library’s infrastructure; (d) improving the Library’s management and performance metrics by expanding the scope and quality of services to attract the substantial segment of our community our Library currently doesn’t serve; (e) helping to turn a semi-moribund institution with declining use and relevance into a vital, forward-looking and sustainable community asset; and (f) looking out for the taxpayers’ interest because the bureaucrats surely don’t.

Or if you would prefer a shorthand version of my agenda: the opposite of your agenda.

Mr. Trizna wrote: “But we’ve come to expect lies and revisionist history from a mercenary who already has taken, and continues to take, far more money OUT of the Library in easy wages than you will ever pay INTO it in taxes.”

There’s that ad hominem attack we’ve come to expect from you. Again, I bow to the master.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Facts, like the truth, are neither good nor bad, although they can often be unpleasant.

A Park Ridge resident who owns a home/condo worth approx. $500K will pay about $10,000-12,000 of RE taxes, of which about $325-350 goes to the Library. So if you, Ms Enright, are paying $350 in RE taxes to the Library, you’ve got to be pulling out at least 20-30 times that each year in wages. And the less you pay in taxes, the bigger your “freeloader” differential – which explains why public employees never beef about the taxes assessed by the unit of government that signs their paychecks.

But if you consider this an “ad hominem attack,” the simple solution is either to buy a much bigger house and pay a lot more in taxes to the Library, or suck a lot less money out of the public trough.

“But we’ve come to expect lies and revisionist history from a mercenary…”

Also this is an incorrect term as well since the term “mercenary” refers to someone who works for monetary gain only and that’s hardly me. In the 16 years I’ve been with the library I’ve had a number of opportunities to leave my position and make more money elsewhere. I didn’t because I truly like the job, the public and the library. So I stayed with a job even as the board became more and more hostile to the staff. That hardly sounds like a mercenary to me.

EDITOR’S NOTE: You’re right – that sounds more like a liar to me. Do you say the same to the Glenview folks, too?

Bob, not sure why you think attacking a departing employee with an axe to grind (what departing employee doesn’t?) is not an act discreditable for a Board member, but a quick Google search should have brought you to this:

American Library Association Code of Ethics

While I have no interest in speculating on Durov’s reasons for departing nor do I support her comments, my guess is that she is referring to Item V.

I wish you supported item VI; it is shameful that you do not.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Item V. “We treat co-workers and other colleagues with respect, fairness, and good faith, and advocate conditions of employment that safeguard the rights and welfare of all employees of our institutions.” No, Ms. Durov wasn’t talking about that.

VI. “We do not advance private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or our employing institutions.” Yeah, that MUST be it, because closing the Library on Sundays last summer so that certain employees could get raises really comports with this one.

http://www.ala.org/advocacy/proethics/codeofethics/codeethics

EDITOR’S NOTE: And the point of this goat rodeo is what exactly?

http://www.ifla.org/faife/professional-codes-of-ethics-for-librarians

EDITOR’S NOTE: And this goat rodeo?

The alderman smith look a like in the flannel shirt really schooled (or shall I say tutored) you pub-dog on the purpose of libraries. He makes a lot of sense while your comments about tutors not teaching how to pitch pennies or play football just made you sound silly. Certain institutions are not meant to be run as businesses and too many “fiscal conservatives” fail to recognize that fact. Many years ago before municipal fire departments came into existence for profit Enterprises existed to put out fires and often two competing companies would (for the sake of getting the profit) end up brawling in the streets over who got there first to be eligible to get the pay tat came with putting out the fire. While they did so the house or building ended up burning down along with the neighboring property.

EDITOR’S NOTE: You’re comparing libraries to fire protection? Seriously?

Are you really that retarded, or are you just pretending for effect?

Actually, we should rephrase that because its insulting to legitimately retarded people. And it might also be erroneous because instead of retarded you might simply be a self-interested tutor who wants to continue to use the Library free of charge for his/her for-profit business; or a parent of a tutored kid whose self-interest comes in the form of not wanting to pay more money if his/her tutor passes through any charge the Library might impose.

Boy oh boy, you sure have the library’s payrollers and their trolls undies in a bunch! I guess they don’t like it when they are called out for putting their interests above the library’s and its patrons. If my customer service business had declining numbers and its fewest customers in years, employees would not just not get raises, employees (and managers) would be fired.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Library praises that kind of performance and gives raises and bonuses for it. And when the Library doesn’t do so, it’s Board is criticized.

With an argument like yours (admitting certain public sector services like fire are not properly run by business ideals) and then simply name calling warrants the following equally valid response:
I’m rubber and your glue …you should know the rest pubdog.

Your response also proves my other point -flannel shirt guy on video with his comments made you look and any other board member that seems to think regulating tutors (I thought you conservatives are against government regulation?) is a priority, as petty and misguided.
Your suggestion that the tutors should tutor at school libraries is equally misguided. The public library is open and operating (ie not costing taxpayers any additional expense) after school hours. To keep the schools open in the evening requires lights hear staff expenses that otherwise would not be incurred.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sometimes nothing but “retarded” fits.

The taxpayers have 7 assets (D-64 buildings) that generally sit empty from 3:00 p.m. of so until around 7:30 a.m., each of which contains a…wait for it…LIBRARY! Since those schools seem to be failing all these kids who need tutoring, maybe it’s time to start holding D-64 accountable for doing its job instead of pawning it off on private tutors and the Library.

You must have missed it, but the Library already “regulates” its patrons – even those who aren’t using it as an “office” for their for-profit businesses – in a variety of ways; e.g., paying for copying; behavioral regulations; study room usage; requiring Library cards to check out materials; etc.

Calling someone “retarded”. Now there is something ya really want to hear coming from a 60-something law partner. Lovely!!

EDITOR’S NOTE: Once again, sometimes nothing less than “retarded” will do. But if your delicate sensibilities are offended, don’t let the cyberdoor hit you in the derriere.

Or you could always go back to wringing your hands about buildings touching other buildings.

What everyone needs to understand is that you had an opportunity at the Board meeting to make your point to Durov, but you would rather than take a courageous stand that might benefit the PR taxpayers, you scurry away and blog about it. Heck, she even asked you for a question.

I found your other blogger post:
For Sale From WatchDog

EDITOR’S NOTE: Maybe you missed it, but nobody had any questions of her.

Maybe you should ask the Library’s director whether Ms. Durov asked her for more cash; and, if so, what was the director’s answer.

And if you were so concerned, where were you – besides trolling this blog anonymously?

“Whenever you hear public employees (or their union reps) talk about how much they “love” their jobs, you can be pretty sure they’re talking about the pay, the constitutionally-guaranteed pension that they often take years earlier than Social Security kicks in for the rest of us, the lack of accountability, the virtual inability to be fired, the virtual certainty their employer won’t pack up and move to Indiana or Guadalajara, or various other advantages they have over private employees.”

Or maybe they actually just love their jobs? Crazy, I know.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Yes, they love them so much that when the Board shifts from raises to bonuses, they beef.

The library world is a small one, and it’s common knowledge that Park Ridge is not a place you want to be because the board actively works to make life difficult for their librarians. So I have to ask — why are you even on the board?

EDITOR’S NOTE: This Board has done NOTHING “to make life difficult for their librarians” – unless you mean not throwing wads of extra cash at them while pretty much every performance metric continues to decrease.

Your comment that tutoring should occur in School district otherwise empty past 3pm buildings implies you as a tax payer would be ok with the extra tax dollars needed to keep the lights and heat on and pay the required personnel to be in the building (probably overtime rate). While the library will be near empty if that happened -wasting our tax dollars lifting and heating the empty building. (Don’t kid yourself most the “patrons” are tutors weekdays after school -and they don’t seem to be bothering the rest of the patrions so you are Pushing a silly fight)You are also becoming a tax and spend type with that logic.

EDITOR’S NOTE: You have no data and can’t prove anything you are saying about the Library’s use by tutors because even the Library’s staff and director admittedly know next to nothing about the tutors’ use of the Library.

Per the director in a Sept. 3 e-mail, they “do not monitor tutors,” “do not regularly count them,” do not “record their use,” and “do not have a plan” for accommodating 20/30/40 tutors even though they admit that the Library “do[es] not have the capacity to accommodate that many tutors at separate tables during 3:00 and 9:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Ms. Durov’s departure is a real loss to the community, as are the numerous other, recent staff resignations. Mr. Trizna has made a mockery of his role as library trustee. Instead of taking stewardship of the library seriously, he insists on imposing his political ideology at every opportunity. His hostility toward the staff, his continued insistence on twisting facts and figures to suit his anti library narrative and his disdain for any perspective that differs from his are all driving a once vibrant city resource into a shadow of what it once was and what it could continue to be with a board that respects the expertise of staff and the opinions of the majority of our residents. He’s an utter embarrassment as a public official and we can only hope the remaining staff and residents can withstand this dark era for the library, knowing it shall, thankfully, eventually, pass.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We report the “facts and figures” that the Library staff provides. So if you have a beef about those, it’s with staff.

Laura Enright wrote: “Also this is an incorrect term as well since the term “mercenary” refers to someone who works for monetary gain only and that’s hardly me. In the 16 years I’ve been with the library I’ve had a number of opportunities to leave my position and make more money elsewhere. I didn’t because I truly like the job, the public and the library. So I stayed with a job even as the board became more and more hostile to the staff. That hardly sounds like a mercenary to me.

EDITOR’S NOTE: You’re right – that sounds more like a liar to me. Do you say the same to the Glenview folks, too?”

Well, and I’m assuming you’re alluding to the other job I have in the circulation department at the Glenview Library, no, I don’t have the same affinity for that job at this point, but then I’ve only been there two years and some change so that doesn’t quite compare to 16 years at PRPL.

But funny you should ask in conjunction with calling me a liar about not leaving a job I love. In the interest of full disclosure, I took the job at Glenview Library because, I’m not sure how it is in your world, but in my world many people need to work 40 hours or more to survive.

I worked part time at Pioneer Press for ten years. Even though my wages stagnated for several years (thanks to the almost constant state of bankruptcy parent company The Sun-Times was in) and one year employees were even to take a reduction in wages, I stayed because I liked the job and it allowed me to continue working at PRPL. I guess I just wasn’t mercenary enough when it came to money. I was asked if I wanted full time at Pioneer when a position opened, but I chose not to cause I really wanted to keep my job at PRPL (and with my writing efforts, 60 + hours between the two jobs would just be too much). I did take on 30 hours at Pioneer though.

In 2013, The Sun-Times closed all the suburban Pioneer offices and moved everyone downtown. I left the company because I wasn’t sure how I could keep the schedule I had with PRPL while commuting (there’d be nights I wouldn’t be leaving Pioneer till 10 p.m.). Since I wanted to keep the job at PRPL, I went looking for another part time (you know that whole 40 hour work week thing) and I chanced upon the job at Glenview Library and was able to arrange the schedule there so that I could continue working at PRPL (it requires two 13 hour days, but what can you do). Now I was encouraged to try for a better position with more hours and better pay at Glenview, but I chose not to, again, cause of the whole love for PRPL thing.

So as you can see, I’m a really crap mercenary cause a lot of work decisions I made revolved around how it would affect my job at PRPL–the job you accuse me of lying about when I say I love it.

Now I know you weren’t seeking that information, but hey, you asked.

EDITOR’S NOTE: For this editor and most people he knows, a 40-hour work week would be part-time. We don’t beef about it, either.

And “a really crap mercenary” is still a “mercenary.”

“EDITOR’S NOTE: The Library praises that kind of performance and gives raises and bonuses for it. And when the Library doesn’t do so, it’s Board is criticized.”

Actually, the Library doesn’t do any of that because of course…it’s a building. Full of knowledge, but not really able to think or communicate.

The reason the Board is criticized is because it’s their decision to take money budgetted for raises, cut that amount down, turn it into one-time bonuses for staff (who interestingly, didn’t actually garner raises or praise when the circ and usage numbers rocketed through the roof in the 2000s) and the pocket the balance and put it…well no one’s really sure what they plan on doing with it. Not even the Board, apparently. They just know they don’t want the staff to have it.

EDITOR’S NOTE: So then take your beef for not “garner[ing] raises or praise when the circ and usage number rocketed through the roof in the 2000s” to the Library trustees back then, because none of the current Board members were part of that crew.

“EDITOR’S NOTE: That’s just plain WRONG.

For the past four years this editor has served on the Library Board, not once has it made any hiring, firing or compensation decision for any employee EXCEPT Director Van De Carr.”

Well…except for that whole turning raises into bonuses magic act you guys pulled. You stepped in pretty quickly there.

EDITOR’S NOTE: If you didn’t get a bonus – as a reward for doing your part in continuing to drive down circulation, attendance, program attendance, etc. – you should take it up with the director.

“A Park Ridge resident who owns a home/condo worth approx. $500K will pay about $10,000-12,000 of RE taxes, of which about $325-350 goes to the Library. So if you, Ms Enright, are paying $350 in RE taxes to the Library, you’ve got to be pulling out at least 20-30 times that each year in wages. And the less you pay in taxes, the bigger your “freeloader” differential – which explains why public employees never beef about the taxes assessed by the unit of government that signs their paychecks.”

There are a few things to read form this. First you accuse me of taking OUT of the library in easy wages. Considering how you haven’t made any attempt to get to know any of the staff people or their jobs, it’s interesting (yet not surprising) that you would assume how easy my wages are.

Be that as it may, you mention the “freeloader” differential. So in terms of my employment, are you suggesting that an employee is simply a freeloader (easy wages or not)? Their work counts for absolutely nothing?

But of course that’s exactly what you’re saying cause you have absolutely no respect for public employees.

But (negating the fact that you shouldn’t have any idea how much I pay in taxes) you bring up the issue of taxes, are you also suggesting that a patron’s library usage allowance in the library should be predicated on how much they pay in taxes? So…someone paying $12K in taxes doesn’t get to take out as many items as someone paying in $15K? Maybe we could have sensors for patrons and they can go off when their allotted time (per their tax rate) is up. We can shoo them out of the library along with the tutors.

Maybe when they sign up for library cards they’ll need a photo ID, something official with their current address AND a statement of how much they’ve paid into taxes in the past few years so that we’ll know what level of club card to give them.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Puh-leeze, it’s a library – the biggest occupational hazard you face is what, a paper cut?

What we said is that you appear to be taking wages out of the Library (a/k/a, from the taxpayers) in annual amounts 10-20-30 times, or more, the amount you pay in RE taxes to the Library, whether directly as an owner or indirectly as a renter. Which explains why you have no respect for the taxpayers who pay your wages but don’t have your “freeloader” delta.

Nobody but you (so far, at least) has suggested something as ridiculous as scaling ordinary Library usage to how much in RE taxes one pays.

Editor wrote: “Are you really that retarded, or are you just pretending for effect?

Once again, sometimes nothing less than “retarded” will do.”

Really, “retarded”? Was the blog taken over by a 12 year old? I would love to see you cross examine a witness.

“You’re honor, clearly the witness didn’t see my client hit the car because he is a poopy-head and he has cooties. I rest my case!”

EDITOR’S NOTE: Only if you were that witness.

In listening to Ms. Durov’s speech, she stated that she loved her job AND that one of her reasons for leaving was salary. Loving your job and wanting a decent pay are not mutually exclusive. Maybe this is not the case for everyone, but that doesn’t make her statement any less true. And simply stating that because she loves her job she is also referring to “the constitutionally-guaranteed pension that they often take years earlier than Social Security kicks in for the rest of us, the lack of accountability, the virtual inability to be fired, the virtual certainty their employer won’t pack up and move to Indiana or Guadalajara, or various other advantages they have over private employees” is a huge leap. Do you have any evidence to prove that Ms. Durov would have retired “years earlier” than anyone else? The inability to be fired? Really?? How about the employees that were cut due to budget cuts? And I had no idea that it was her (or any other public employee’s) fault, that simply because their employer can’t pack up and move that they should be held accountable. In addition, how is it your, or anyone else’s business what Ms. Durov’s salary will be in her new job. Do you go around telling people, especially in a videotaped PUBLIC meeting, what you make? I seriously doubt it. And seriously, did you really call the Managers of the Library, the Inmates?? And I suppose the rest of the library is the Asylum? Not a very professional statement coming from the VP of the Board. I had no idea that it was the Board’s responsibility to micromanage. Talk about bureaucrats gone wild. As for those numbers that you just adore so much? According the the last PUBLISHED minutes dated 8/18/15, the circulation figures were at 190,933 in fiscal year ’08, which if I remember correctly was the year the Recession started. From that point until fiscal year ’15 they jumped up. Makes sense. And now it seems they are now leveling off now that the Recession and Recovery has ended. The “squishy numbers” that she is referring to is the way they are twisted to make it somehow the staff’s fault that they have leveled off. In any case, in reading your vile words directed toward a respected manager of the Library, one could hardly blame her, or any staff member, to want to work in a Library where they are respected and preferably not referred to as a mercenary. Finally, I think it is disingenuous of you to state that you have no control over raises. Wasn’t there a whole article in the Herald-Advocate on this? Oh yeah, there was… http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/park-ridge/news/ct-prh-library-employee-pay-tl-0430-20150423-story.html

EDITOR’S NOTE: “It would be disingenuous for me to say that salary were not a large part of my decision to leave.“ [Emphasis added.]

This editor does not get his salary from the taxpayers, which is why it’s a private and not a public matter.

The “squishy numbers” come from the director and staff, and I report them exactly as they appear in the reports the director provides. The “squishiness” is likely the daily/monthly/annual attendance, which is measured by the number of entries and exits, no matter how many of them are generated by one person – or even staff members – going in and out for coffee, smoke break, etc.

And if Ms. Durove was so valuable to the Library, Ms. Van De Carr has the discretion to give her the entire bonus pool…or to come to the Board and make a compelling case for more money for Ms. Durov and/or other staff members. But she didn’t.

Private sector employees aren’t bubble-wrapped and garage-kept. Public sector employees are. Hence the outrage – real and feigned – when the latter finally are subjected to accountability and real-world economics.

Mr. Watchdog, my response to charges here and elsewhere that you are a “bully” is to say: “Bully for you!” for saying what needs saying.

I was a government (state) employee for several years until I couldn’t take the incompetence and entitlement mentality any longer. I left for the private sector in the exact same industry as with the state, but now work with people who are all net tax payers instead of tax consumers.

But that’s not why I write this. I also am a divorced father who has his pre-teen children on weekends. Saturdays are for sports, which left only Sundays for regular visits to the library. So the library’s closing on Sunday’s last summer deprived my children and me of some great “quality time” for what I feel were petty political reasons. And none of the current complainers, or dedicated library staff, spoke one word of protest.

Thankfully, our late mayor appointed enough new board members (Lamb, Parisi) to reverse the Sunday closing decision after several weeks. Thankfully, his successor looks to have continued that effort with Dobrilovic, Rayborn and Reardon.

As a taxpayer I am pleased to finally have a majority of the library board that actually views me as something more than an ATM. As a library user, I am even more pleased to see and read about your and this new board’s commitment to making this library better using measurable data rather than speculation and anecdote.

Thank you all, and keep doing what is right for the whole community, taxpayers and users alike.

EDITOR’S NOTE: You’re welcome.

“This Board has done NOTHING “to make life difficult for their librarians” – unless you mean not throwing wads of extra cash at them while pretty much every performance metric continues to decrease.”

I asked you a very straight-forward question — why are you even on the board? Since you declined to answer it, I’ll do it for you.

Sir, I believe you to be a misogynist.

I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt that you are acting in the town’s interest. (Where I believe that or not is immaterial.) Yet of all the areas you could focus your efforts on, you choose the library, one of the few areas of public service where employees are almost exclusively female.

Your attitude toward the library and its librarians is so full of disdain that it would be comical if it weren’t true. And I’m extremely confident that you wouldn’t be this determined to undermine their ability to do their jobs if the director and others were male.

One final note: the library is not supposed to be a profit center. That’s kind of the point of public services.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Nice try with that “misogynist” shot, but the answer was already given to Ms. Enright in response to her 09.22.15 @ 12:50 pm comment:

My “agenda” is simple, and includes: (a) keeping the Library’s doors open; (b) eliminating irresponsible deficit spending and unaccountability; (c) ending chronic neglect of the Library’s infrastructure; (d) improving the Library’s management and performance metrics by expanding the scope and quality of services to attract the substantial segment of our community our Library currently doesn’t serve; (e) helping to turn a semi-moribund institution with declining use and relevance into a vital, forward-looking and sustainable community asset; and (f) looking out for the taxpayers’ interest because the bureaucrats surely don’t.

One final note: the Library will never be a “profit center” until it stops shaking down the taxpayers, which is never going to happen. The best one can hope for is to stanch the constant bleeding.

Silent but grateful, lol. Really, if a few Sundays without library hours negatively affected your family dynamic l don’t think the VP of Library board is who you need to be consulting.

But clearly you’ve bought Mr Trizna’s narrative, including the names of the “good guys” on the board, and summarized it quite well here. Very well done.

“helping to turn a semi-moribund institution with declining use and relevance into a vital, forward-looking and sustainable community asset”

I am curious: what would make the library “relevant, vital, and “forward-looking” in your view? Can you be specific? I’ve read the Board Meeting minutes every month for years, Mr. Trizna, and I’m still not sure what you feel the library is for. Do you believe it helps to maintain a literate, educated, and informed community? Is it primarily to benefit students? Should there be public programming? How important is technology over print materials?

I’m not trying to trash you, here — I’m just asking questions that I think are important for a library board member to consider and comment on in a specific way — especially if he seems to be indicating that librarians are incapable of doing so.

For the record, my family has owned a home in Park Ridge for over 50 years, and we pay over $14,000 a year in property taxes. We are regular library users.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Your $14K in taxes provides about $450 on the Library – which doesn’t even come close to covering just Laura Enright’s multi-thousand dollar “freeloader differential.” So are you looking for a participation trophy, or are you trying to make some other point?

As for what would make the library relevant, vital, and forward-looking, the Board is still waiting for the $140K/year library director and Library staff – our “library professionals” with their library degrees and specialized training – to come up with their grand ideas. So far, however, it’s been little more than some suggested furniture rearrangement and, perhaps, the addition of a couple/three more study rooms.

And, of course, more money for herself and her staff.

But rather that sit waiting for Godot, this editor has noted the success of many of the ideas Maxine Bleiweis has implemented at the Westport, Connecticut library (e.g., a “Makerspace” and its “BOOKED for the Evening” fundraiser); Exeter, England’s “Fab Lab” (digital Fabrication Laboratory housing 3D printers and scanners, CNC Routers, digital sewing machines, soldering stations and lightboxes); and some of the marketing ideas of the New Library in Almere, the Netherlands, to mention just a few.

And if the Library is serious about evolving into a 21st Century facility, it has to make a commitment to getting beyond the mediocrity of doing what it’s always done while adding some minor innovation “tweak” like its tiny media lab, or its 3D printer that was intentionally stuck in a place that perhaps as much as one-third of the Library’s visitors never even see.

And yes, there should be a lot more programming, but not just the same old same old that brings in 5-10 participants. We need to attract and engage the one-third of our residents who don’t even hold a Library card, and do more to increase circulation beyond the current 53% of our cardholders.

Of course, that’s coming from just some unpaid, part-time non-librarian. But that’s only because it’s not coming from full-time staff.

Silent but grateful, Did “Mr. Watchdog” give you talking points for your comment or did he just write it verbatim for you?

11:12:

No, see what you have to do is apply the PD rule about anonymous posters. What they say is not worth anything so SBG’s post is completely invalid. By going that on this thread we are left with a sixty-something law partner and appointed library board member having an internet “slap fight” with a library employee. At least he had not called Ms. Enright a retard…..yet.

EDITOR’S NOTE: At least she signs her name.

Now go back to worrying about something within your wheelhouse, like local buildings that touch.

Mr Trizna are you serious with your comment to 11:28? Do you really think the PR library, with its dated facility and modest budget can even begin to compare to the aspirational libraries you cite? Do you even listen to yourself? You clearly think the library is a frivoulous use of taxpayer dollars yet you expect the staff to innovate like librarians with budgets that would give you a cornonary. You can’t have it both ways. And you know it. You’re setting up the staff to fail with your twisted agenda. I guess it’s not surprising coming from the guy who gleefully ran Oakton pool into the ground.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Serious as a heart attack, Zippy.

The Library is most definitely NOT “a frivoulous use of taxpayer dollars,” it just hasn’t been managed all that well, and with no innovation or creativity. With the recent tax hike, however, its budget is about the same as the Westport library’s.

Judging the Library’s numbers, staff doesn’t need anybody’s help in floundering. And since you apparently don’t know spit about Oakton pool, the short version is that it had outlived its useful life when the diving well imploded in 2005; and the voters rejected two different replacement pool referendums in 2005 and 2007.

Gee….Silent but grateful got a “your welcome” and he/she did not sign their name. Now you making me sad!

EDITOR’S NOTE: Acceptable collateral damage.

And its pretty unbelievable of you to trash the media lab, which was created presumably on your watch. If you thought it was so mediocre, why would you not speak up? And what else can staff do with its limited funds? Your crack about the inmates running the asylum? A perfect description of this library board.

EDITOR’S NOTE: That’s what happens when you lapse and blindly trust the “professional” librarians. Won’t get fooled again.

Our “limited funds” are about the same as Westport’s. But if $5 million-plus a year isn’t enough, get off your sorry derriere and start a referendum to get the taxpayers to pony up another couple/three/four/five million more.

Re 9:42. I don’t know if you’re being disingenuous or just stupid. A quick google search shows that Westport’s library is a modern facility, 15,000 square feet larger that PR’s and much better equipped to handle the evolving needs of today’s patrons. You belittle our staff’s efforts to repurpose space but what the heck else are they supposed to do? They are working within some pretty rigid limitations.

Back to Westport’s library, they were likely fortunate enough not to have a vocal opposition group block any plans to upgrade or modernize when they did so in 1998, when they increased their square footage by over 45%. Go figure, even as they reduced the size of their book collections, they recognized the need for flexible community spaces. And that Makerspace you latched onto? “Generously” funded by a federal grant, not through its budget. For someone who loves data so much you really like to compare apples and oranges when it suits your needs. It’s truly embarrassing how you have turned the library board into a farce.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This editor definitely loves data, even the half-baked variety the Board gets from staff. And if you read more closely you will see that the comparison was to budget, not size of facility.

That being said, if only you and your fellow Library staff members put in this much effort while on the taxpayers dime rather than commenting here, we might actually start making some positive strides toward improving the Library for our residents.

“Your $14K in taxes provides about $450 on the Library – which doesn’t even come close to covering just Laura Enright’s multi-thousand dollar “freeloader differential.” So are you looking for a participation trophy, or are you trying to make some other point?”

Just giving you a little context, since you seem to care a great deal with how much people spend on property taxes. I’m also a regular library user — I can see for myself what’s being done with my tax dollars. A few hundred dollars may be trivial for you, but not for me.

I hope that qualifies me to ask you a civil question or two. After all, you’re representing me on the Library Board, aren’t you?

EDITOR’S NOTE: No, this editor doesn’t give a tinker’s damn about “how much people spend on property taxes,” only that they get the value they want and deserve from those taxes.

Since your anonymity deprives you of any credibility as to who you are and what you pay, your avatar “qualifies” you for nothing – yet you still got a seven-paragraph answer, so what’s your beef?

And until you can prove that you pay taxes for the Park Ridge Library, you’re not entitled to representation on the Board by me.

“EDITOR’S NOTE: For this editor and most people he knows, a 40-hour work week would be part-time. We don’t beef about it, either.”

Great! Then we’re in agreement then. See, we were able to find common ground.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Not until you get rid of the public-employee bubble wrap and actually leave the public-sector garage for a spin through the real world of private-sector pay-for-performance accountability.

“As for what would make the library relevant, vital, and forward-looking, the Board is still waiting for the $140K/year library director and Library staff – our “library professionals” with their library degrees and specialized training – to come up with their grand ideas. So far, however, it’s been little more than some suggested furniture rearrangement and, perhaps, the addition of a couple/three more study rooms.”

Unlike wasting time on studying nonexistent “tutor problem”.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Only “nonexistent” to folks with the shameless entitlement mentality who view taxpayers as a bottomless ATM.

“What everyone needs to understand is that you had an opportunity at the Board meeting to make your point to Durov, but you would rather than take a courageous stand that might benefit the PR taxpayers, you scurry away and blog about it.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Maybe you missed it, but nobody had any questions of her.”

Yeah, but you have admit, none of the other board members scurried off to a blog after the meeting to insult Kelly and her fellow staff members.

Signed,
The Freeloader Differential

EDITOR’S NOTE: Since the meeting was on a Tuesday night and the post was published the following Monday, you must be operating on a different definition of “scurried.”

And of “insult” when you apply it to facts and truth.

“EDITOR’S NOTE: Since the meeting was on a Tuesday night and the post was published the following Monday, you must be operating on a different definition of ‘scurried.’

And of ‘insult’ when you apply it to facts and truth.”

No…I think i”m pretty good with the term “insult”. I’ve followed your ad hominem attacks on people for sometime.

But let’s review, shall we:

“Yes, folks, that IS the inmates running the asylum.”

“when Ms. Durov’s favorite director and a previous library board of bobbleheaded rubber-stampers decided to close the Library on Sundays during summer 2014 as a political stunt to embarrass the City Council and enrage the citizenry into coercing the Council into giving the Library more money, thereby avoiding the referendum that the Council nevertheless thrust upon a reluctant and unappreciative director, Staff and board.”

Ooh, ad hominem AND a falsehood. Nicely played.

“That’s because when one cuts through all the bogus rhetoric, the Library’s “patrons” are little more than props that employees like Ms. Durov use for their own purposes, like arguing for more money in their pockets. So invoking the welfare of the Library’s patrons is just empty lip service designed to sucker those patrons into thinking that many/most(?) Staff members aren’t just mercenaries.”

“And thanks to a small-but-vocal minority of easily-bamboozled patrons and a complicit local press, that tactic usually works…until someone like Ms. Durov shows her true colors, captured on video, before selling herself to a higher bidder.”

Oh no…not insulting at all.

EDITOR’S NOTE: And the saddest part is that it’s all true – except for some of the obvious statements of opinion (“bobbleheaded rubber-stampers,” “easily-bamboozled patrons”).

But if you want to talk about falsehoods, start by producing even one page of any of the Library Board’s extraordinarily detailed meeting minutes from the relevant time period that identify even one Library staff member appearing before the Board to argue AGAINST closing the Library on Sundays during summer 2014. You and the rest of the Library’s staff were MIA on that because you didn’t give a rat’s derriere about those Sunday patrons, especially if keeping those doors open might mean no raises.

“But if you want to talk about falsehoods, start by producing even one page of any of the Library Board’s extraordinarily detailed meeting minutes from the relevant time period that identify even one Library staff member appearing before the Board to argue AGAINST closing the Library on Sundays during summer 2014. You and the rest of the Library’s staff were MIA on that because you didn’t give a rat’s derriere about those Sunday patrons, especially if keeping those doors open might mean no raises.”

I can’t speak for the rest of the staff as to why they didn’t speak at the board meetings but I can say to use that as proof of anything is pretty week. I do think, if I remember correctly, I was pretty vocal about my irritation that the library had been defunded by the city thus leading to the very difficult decision by the board to close on Sundays. And if I remember correctly it was on this very blog that I said that Sunday was part of my work schedule so not only did I think it was unfortunate for the patrons, I was going to be inconvenienced by it (that was when you mentioned that I didn’t care about the staff that would be affected and I had to remind you that I was a part of the staff that would be affected).

But spin that however you want. You’ve been doing it for two years, you’ll continue I’m sure.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither you nor any other staff member attended ANY Library Board meeting to object to summer Sunday closings, and the reasons are obvious: either you and many/most/all other staff members preferrd diverting the approx. $20K saved by those summer Sunday closings to funding staff raises; or none of you dared voice opposition to Ms. Van De Carr’s recommendation of such a diversion.

Because you can’t possibly be suggesting that voicing your “irritation” about that situation in comments on this blog are somehow the equivalent of making such comments in person at a Library Board meeting, or in person at a City Council meeting, can you?

And what’s particularly sad is that you have a board member of a library that has made no effort to actually get to know the staff of that library and instead has spend the past few years not only insulting them but trying to pit the citizens against the employees. But…I guess that’s easier to do.

EDITOR’S NOTE: What’s “easier to do” is spew unfounded revisionist history and self-interested lies, which would appear to be why you’ve already cornered that market.

The truth is that the library’s director and the previous board, with staff’s tacit approval or acquiescence, were the ones who cynically chose “to pit the citizens against the employees” by closing the Library’s doors on its busiest day in order to: (a) divert the $20,000 for summer Sundays to employee raises; (b) provoke community anger against the City Council for not increasing the Library’s funding with City dollars; and (c) generate support for a tax increase if that issue went to referendum.

All of which we wrote about – quoting the director and various board members from the official meeting minutes – in our 04.14.14 post.

This self-righteous outrage you’ve spun about the poor Sunday users — like your fake single dad who was deprived of quality time with his kids last summer — being shafted by scheming staff and board members is laughable. Word is you were perfectly fine with closing the library another day, ideally a weekday when the children’s dept is busy with programs and visitors, to save money. Apparently Sunday taxpayers are a priority but weekday users can go take a flying leap in your wingnut world. Just as laughable is your self righteous pets on your back for moving your meetings to city hall under the guise of transparency. The meetings were open and perfectly transparent in the library itself. Those big chairs in the horseshoe, though, pretty alluring to someone with delusions of importance and relevance. And sanity. And inconveniencing staff by making them troop to another building? Icing on the cake.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Since the allegedly “fake single dad” comment came in the same way as yours, you must be equally fake.

And either uninformed or misinformed, because I proposed cutting only one hour a day from four or five other days to cover Sundays.

As for the allure of “[t]hose big chairs in the horseshoe” in the Council Chambers, feel free to show up by 7:00 p.m. on October 20 to replace my “big chair” with one of the audience chairs. I won’t mind.

And since you sound like you could be one of those staff members the Board is “inconveniencing” with that one block Bataan Death March to City Hall, you can consider switching chairs for me a twofer.

She can’t support her family working at the PRPL?

What does her husband make?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Unless he is a Park Ridge public employee, it’s none of our business.

Such childish dialogue from a library board member…

EDITOR’S NOTE: We don’t particularly enjoy it, but it’s necessary when its the only thing children seem to understand.

Wow, I mention that Enright woman and she pops out 16 (?) comments almost on cue.

I gather from her comments and your responses that she has never brought her gripes to a library board meeting, or to a city council meeting. No offense to this blog, but griping here, while informative and entertaining, is no substitute for showing up in person.

I can only imagine that besides her comments a bunch of the other ones are from library employees (or former library board members) to whom your ideas are blasphemy and you are the anti-christ. I sure hope you have thick skin because the mosquitoes are biting with a vengeance.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Thick enough.

I’ve made a couple comments and each time you assumed I am a library staffer. I’m not, I’m just a resident who cares about the library and is aghast at how clueless the board seems to be about how libraries run and how disrespectful they are to staff. If people really thought the library was so poorly managed and/or irrelevant, more residents would voted against the referendum than for it. That must have been a tough blow to you and your anti library cronies in city hall who seemed so smugly confident it wouldn’t pass. Clearly that’s why you’re resorting to all these smear tactics. Heaven forbid you ever admit you’re on the wrong side here.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Yes you have, and yes we have.

You’re every bit as much a library staffer as that Park Ridge dad is the “fake” you accused him of being. Or you might just as easily be one of those non-resident for-profit tutors who suck free “office” space out of our taxpayers. Or a parent of one of their customers who doesn’t want the tutors charged for their space because of fear/knowledge that the tutors will just pass that cost through to the parent.

One reason why more residents may not be upset about the Library’s poor performance metrics is because the director (with the aid of a complicit local press) has been very effective in keeping those poor numbers – in circulation, attendance, program attendance – swept under the carpet. Out of sight, out of mind.

Both the City Council and this editor wanted the referendum so that the taxpayers could voice their opinion in the best and most measurable way. Not surprisingly, the director and the then-board were against that; and no staff member voiced any support for it, either. They preferred to close the Library to pressure the Council into giving the Library more money without letting the voters speak.

“We don’t particularly enjoy it, but it’s necessary when its the only thing children seem to understand”.

Considering football season is in full swing again, let me dust my favorite quote from Da Coach…..PD, who ya crappin’??

Taken in reverse order, no, it is not “necessary”. There are many people (in elected or appointed positions and otherwise) who feel just as strongly as you about taxes and transparency and leadership. There are also people feel just as strongly the other way. Almost none of them would ever even consider getting into such a childish dialogue. Necessary implies it is required to accomplish a goal. What goal is advanced or how is the situation even slightly changed by the above dialogue. None. With or without the above slap fight you will still be able to advance you position on all library issues and share that opinion in open meetings. Which leads me to my second point.

“We don’t particularly like it…..” Please!! Forget like, you LOVE it. You are a very intelligent and articulate man who uses words for a living. On this blog you often chose words that you will know will incite your opponent, not to accomplish a goal but because you Love the “childish dialogue”.

EDITOR’S NOTE: “There are many people (in elected or appointed positions and otherwise) who feel just as strongly as you about taxes and transparency and leadership.”

All those closed sessions at D-64 and D-207 prove that statement totally wrong and just plain silly.

Hence, our need to talk down to silly comments and the children who make them.

Interesting article:http://lj.libraryjournal.com/blogs/annoyedlibrarian/2015/10/01/degrading-you-decide/

EDITOR’S NOTE: Thanks, “George,” for sharing.

We normally don’t read “The Annoyed Librarian” blog because we get enough anonymous comments of that type from that ilk already – albeit not from someone describing herself as “possibly the most successful, respected, and desirable librarian of her generation…[who] has no other interest than to bring her wit and wisdom to the huddled librarian masses yearning to breathe free.”

And, frankly, it’s quite gratifying to see that we’ve struck a nerve among career public trough-feeders who view their good wages, their regular raises, their job security and their constitutionally-guaranteed pensions as an entitlement; and who view accountability to the taxpayers as some form of abuse.

You are a schyster for the mayor, an ass-hole and generally a butt-head. you couldn’t possibly know anything about what it means to be a librarian and how librarian’s impact people’s lives. You are a destroyer of people. You don’t build, you tear down.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Opinions vary.

You’re an anonymous coward, but there’s probably somebody who’ll have a drink with you…if you buy.

[…] A Valedictory Address Worth Watching […]



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