CLINTON, Iowa — After years of discussion and planning, Clinton voters finally may get a chance in November to vote on a proposal to turn the former Harding Elementary School site into a new city library.
The city council voted 6-1 Tuesday to place on its next meeting agenda a resolution to put the bond issue referendum on the Nov. 2 ballot. Council member Mike Kearney, 2nd Ward, voted against the resolution.
The Clinton Public Library board is seeking voter approval of a $9.2 million bond issue to renovate the former school building on the city’s northwest side for use as a public library.
The school closed in 2003 due to budget constraints. In 2004, the school board agreed to allow the city to use the building for a new library, but the building will revert back to the school district if a referendum to fund the library project is not approved by March 1, 2011.
The building currently is being used as a temporary home for the Clinton YMCA.
Council members Mark Vulich, at-large, and Maggie Klaes, 1st Ward, said they wanted to make sure the current Carnegie library building would not be left abandoned.
“We promise you that won’t happen,” said library board president Richard Kissack.
Kissack said there have been inquiries about renovating the building to its original look, inside and out.
Vulich also said the council has made it clear that the city can’t afford to issue the $9.2 million in bonds now, but Kissack said the referendum could be written in a way that would allow the city to issue the bonds when it is fiscally possible.