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By the book
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We have a lifelong love for the printed word.

To that end at least one of our editorial board swears he will never use a Kindle or any device other than a bound book of genuine paper to read and store literature.

There is certain smell that a book has and a joy to be found in turning pages in order to see the next printed word that never ceases to make one's heart smile.We also have a great big soft spot in our heart for our library system.

So, we find it heartbreaking to see our libraries facing budget woes that result in cuts in hours and offerings on the shelves.

We fully understand the dilemma of elected officials in trying to balance a budget based on declining tax revenues, and we encourage them to stay the course in keeping costs in line without increasing the millage rate or fees.

Library funding has to be on the table, as does everything and everyone who receives county funding.
But in defense of the library, we note that it has been a life saver and job creator in a tough time.
People who are out of work have been using its computer network to find jobs, which is critical for our recovery here in Newton County.

Also, just as we need strong schools and leadership to attract business, we also need a strong library. It's a key component of a county's quality of life.

We encourage our government and library officials to search out other library systems that have found ways to thrive when the economy is in the sewer.
Maybe the library board could come up with a major community fundraiser to earn money to keep our library in the black.

Newton County needs and deserves a great library system. We encourage the board to do whatever it takes, and hope that they come up with some "novel" solutions.