I would like to clarify comments I made during the Central Kitsap Community Council meeting of March 20, regarding a new location for the Silverdale branch of the Kitsap Regional Library.
I have been working for more than 15 years for the creation of the Central Kitsap Community Campus and a new library for Silverdale. There is no one in Silverdale who is more interested in building our new library and building it now.
During the meeting, I suggested that, in deciding upon a new location, we should consider our vision for Silverdale for the next 30 to 50 years. However, I was not suggesting that we wait 30 to 50 years to start building our new library. To the contrary, I believe that we should proceed with all deliberate speed on building our new library now.
Having said that, I remind all that, wherever we build the new library, that building will probably serve our community for the next 50 to 100 years. So, this is a decision that requires very careful deliberation and should not be rushed.
I do understand the value of deadlines. So, I understand KRL’s selection of June 5 as their deadline for making a decision about the location for our new library. But, I do hope that KRL remains flexible with this deadline so that Kitsap County has adequate time to develop the best possible proposal for the placement of the library on the Central Kitsap Community Campus.
I would remind all that Commissioner Linda Streissguth has been in her job for less than three months and should be given sufficient time to address this important decision.
The Kitsap County Board of Commissioners are the local municipal government for Silverdale. This is important to remember because, in Kitsap County, the historical model is that the local community and government provide the actual physical building for that community’s library branch.
So, I would encourage the commissioners to provide KRL the best possible deal for the placement of our library on the Community Campus. Whatever deal the commissioners offer KRL should be better than the deal that was provided to the YMCA. After all, in Kitsap County, providing a home for a local KRL branch is a responsibility of our local municipal government.
Kitsap County has been sucking substantial tax revenues out of Silverdale for more than 30 years and, now, it is time for the county to make this investment in and for Silverdale.
Finally, I am confident that, as a community, we can continue to develop the Community Campus so that it can become the heart of Silverdale that has been the vision.
I am confident that the campus can become the place where our community comes together to enjoy their cultural, literary and recreational interests.