Pulling together pays off for all residents of Basalt | AspenTimes.com

Pulling together pays off for all residents of Basalt

Community teamwork is apparently still alive and well in Basalt.

Despite the nasty election fight that took place last fall over plans to raise taxes and build a new library, the citizens of the district joined forces in recent months to solve a problem resulting from the failure of the tax questions.

One of the tax questions was designed to raise enough money to keep the current library operating at its current level of service. When it failed, the board found itself facing a $30,000 shortfall. That led to a decision to close the library on Mondays throughout 2004.

However, it was announced last week that people in the community had donated $15,000 to the district, which will be used to keep the popular facility open on Mondays through June. If another $15,000 is raised, the library will stay open on Mondays throughout the year.

What’s particularly pleasing about this is the way the money was raised. The Town Council was the first to step up to the plate, offering $5,000 to help build momentum. Individuals, families and businesses accepted the challenge and raised another $5,000. Finally, an unnamed donor pitched in the final $5,000.

This is an example of an entire community working together successfully toward a common goal. We have no doubt the final $15,000 will easily be raised by June.

It also shows Basalt’s commitment to its library, and the ability of its residents to overcome their differences (that were so pronounced during the election) for the betterment of their town.

We hope this spirit of cooperation continues as the district moves forward in developing a new plan for the library’s future. The citizens have shown just how important the library is to them; now we’d like to see them use that energy to build a library the entire community can be proud of.