Library aims to serve entire county – Walmsley hopes to take institution forward

July 13, 2017

“Serving the children of the world” is the motto of the Kiwanis Club. On Friday, they gathered for a talk by Independence County Library Board President Bill Walmsley, whose goals for the library are similar to that expressed in the Kiwanis logo, with economically disadvantaged adults and elderly thrown into the mix as well.

“I wanted to update you on what has become a long process,” Walmsley said. “I spent 46 years practicing law, 12 years in the Arkansas Senate and two years as a judge on the Arkansas Court of Appeals and I don’t think I’ve faced anything quite as complex as dealing with the attempts at renovating and transforming our county library.”

Tuesday was a critical day for Walmsley and the library. It’s the day they would find out if the bids they receive to remodel the library fall within the amount they have to spend.

“You all probably know we’re in a 1950s library right now,” Walmsley said. “[It’s] 5,000 square feet in the old federal building. We have no handicap entrance to it, so it is a problem on those people who happen to be handicapped and not as mobile as we’re lucky to be. We have no private classrooms, so in the past when we had story time and things like that, we had to have small attendance or else it disrupted all activity within the library.”

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