Recent budget cuts and shortages have caused some changes in our library system, PALS (Prairie Area Library System).

As I understand it, the system will be merging with all other library systems in the state of Illinois, to form one statewide system. (with the exception of Chicago, who will still have their own separate setup.)

Sadly, we've also lost the assistance of several PALS people who used to make life much easier for us librarians. Most notable among these losses, to me, is that of Nancy Smith, who helped me through my first year here with many reminders, much information, and lots of encouragement. I've already noticed the conspicuous absence of her frequent emails to keep me updated on what I should be doing (in the areas of reports and grants, etc.) to stay abreast of the various things that need to be filed and reported on in order to stay "legal" and satisfy state and other requirements.

She will be sorely missed. :(

Another result of this change is that I may have to change the library cards again to reflect whatever the new system will be called, and the link to PALS on the home page here may become inoperable as it stands, so if you have occasion to go there, be forewarned. I will try to update things here as quickly as I become aware of changes.

Our ability to order books online should not be affected, from what I've read, so we should still be able to get you about anything you may want to read - in fact, I wonder if we may not end up with a bigger range of libraries' contents to choose from - that will be interesting to find out.

Locally, plans are still under way to rearrange the library and add a reading corner, with seating and access to magazines and newspapers, etc. This is an attempt to give patrons another area in the library in which to relax, other than in front of a computer, which is currently about the only place those other than small children can sit at the moment.
The library can be a great place to spend part of an afternoon here in Bureau, as it's air-conditioned and NOT a bar. (wink!)

And, great news! Our landlord has come in with a contractor, and intends to put in a publicly accessible rest room, at long last! The lack of this simple amenity has seriously crippled our ability to have any sort of reading programs for children, or even adults. The restroom should be handicap accessible as well, which is also wonderful.

Here's hoping this gets accomplished in time for the start of the new school year, so we can begin to invite classes from the school (and smaller children) here for visits and reading hours. :)