Less than one year ago, East Hancock Library was closed due to a lack of funds

Today, the Hancock County Library system is so flush with money it can afford to buy a Gold Sponsorship ($1,200) to the Chamber of Comemerce Gala this evening at the Hollywood Casino in Bay St Louis but the Library system is not the only taxpayer funded entity that will party on the taxpayer dime tonight. This does not count the Hancock County Library Foundation, which also bought a $1,200 table for the event:

Platinum sponsors of the event are: Hancock Bank, Aerojet Rocketdyne, American Medical Response, Coast Electric Power Association, Hancock County Tourism Development Bureau, Hollywood Casino – Gulf Coast, Bob & Barbara Huet, Mississippi Power Company, and Silver Slipper Casino & Hotel.

Gold sponsors of the event are: Chemours DeLisle Plant, James J. Chiniche, P. A., Inc. Engineering & Surveying, Dunbar Village, Hancock County Library System, Keesler Federal Credit Union, Lazy Magnolia Brewery, John McDonald Realty, Southern Mississippi Planning & Development District, The Library Foundation of Hancock County, and The Peoples Bank.

First up kudos to all the local private businesses that have stepped up to support their public interest group. That said, when the Library and Tourism folks show up poor mouthing their budgets while asking the Bay City Council for taxpayer handouts, maybe they should be asked about how they spend the tax money they already receive. That said this is not the only story in yesterday’s Echo that was worth reading:

Hancock supervisors seek to increase millage ~ Dwayne Bremer

10 thoughts on “Less than one year ago, East Hancock Library was closed due to a lack of funds”

  1. They don’t just go to the Bay for financial support. They go to Waveland, Diamondhead, and the County.
    Just my opinion, but those who accept $$$ help from the public to “stay alive” ( and I have actually witnessed them tell one public body, “we can always close the library if you can’t help us keep it open!!”)
    should use their funds only on things that the general public supporting them can afford to participate in. No one’s property taxes should increase to give a select few a party.

  2. This is what is ruining our country. We don’t require financial accountability for the entities that pander handouts to do things no one asked them to do and then create careers out of it! The gala is a social event. Well intended but a social event non the less.

  3. I’m a big fan of the library system. Just not a fan of how it’s been run in the last eight years or so. They haven’t been able to figure out how to best serve the ever changing dynamics of the communities they serve. To say they have been stuck on silly would be an understatement. It’s like the BP oil spill and the “Great Recession” happened in a vacuum and had zero impact on how they operated. Major opportunities to make a difference were and continue to be missed.

    Like many other publicly funded entities, they have become lax and expect the taxpayers to fund them “just because” they always have. It really is more important than ever that we have a strong library system in Hancock County. But I digress. The pain will have to outweigh the pleasure of status quo before things will change.

    The sponsorships are absolutely in poor taste. The question is, who is on the library board and foundation that has a close relationship with the executive director of the chamber? How much influence, if any, did they have on the decision to drop $2400 on this event?

    On another note: SMPDD is another publicly funded entity. They just don’t have to answer to the tax payers. One more good ole boy set up. While the SMPDD does provide many great services, they should not be able to conduct business behind closed doors with taxpayers’ money. Kudos to Mr. Kinney for taking this issue on. Major thumbs down to the MSSC. It’s a shame the dissenters were out numbered on this one.

    http://courts.ms.gov/Images/Opinions/CO114404.pdf

  4. Just ran into a long term staff member of the Hancock County Library System, who said they had read on Slabbed that the Library System had been identified on this website as a Gold Sponsor of the Chamber Gala at the Hollywood Casino. This staff member wanted me to know that the Library Foundation had put up the money for the Gold Sponsorship, not the Library System.
    Don’t know how all of that works, but perhaps the Library Director should contact the Sea Coast Echo for a correction because that is how it was reported in the Wednesday, August 24, edition of the paper, not just on Slabbed.

  5. The foundation should be supporting the system. Instead of it buying up valuable property around the library keeping it off the tax roll. The taxpayer is getting stuck and BSL is getting it twice. We pay county taxes which fund it then BSL pays 300k again for some unknown reason. BSL addresses from all over the unincorporated area in the county falsify the user number and they fool the city council into grossly over funding them. We have to stop spending money like a bunch of drunken sailors.

  6. I am 100% for contributing to the support of the libraries in Hancock County. However, I do think our Board of Supervisors after Katrina allowed too many to be built for the population we have.
    The population of Hancock County in 2005 was 46,097. It is currently around 45,566. We have not regained our population. However, we have in both public school districts over 70% of the students on free or reduced lunch. That is very telling. It means we have 30% or less of us out here footing the bill with no relief in sight. In Waveland where I live, we have yet another subsidized housing project under construction.
    Our elected and appointed officials have to come to terms at some point in time that the taxes they levy against our properties has to be spent wisely. Period. And those who receive public funding have to understand that too.
    Those of us who are “taxpayers” have to play the hand that is dealt us right now, but that does not mean we take our eyes of the players.
    Slabbed did not report the monetary participation of those giving the Chamber Gala. They lifted the story right out of the Sea Coast Echo. If it hit a nerve, those offended can go to Randy Ponder for a correction. The Echo has a reputation for being gracious when they have erred and printing the correct information.

  7. If the donations came from a private source, i.e. the library foundation, then my comment should be disregarded.

    If the donation to the Chamber came directly from the library, I wonder what the library got in return. If it received nothing, then this donation probably runs afoul of the constitutional prohibition on donating public money.

  8. wow I heard the same thing. nonprofits need to reinvent themselves and pander funds from the individuals who think they are important. I personally want a hospital, roads, street lights, potable water, sewer, public safety etc. the other stuff is fluff.

    tax payers are no philanthropist.

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