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$5M bond would mean new library for Bingham County

On the ballot for Bingham County voters Tuesday is a $5 million bond to build a new library that supporters say the community is in desperate need of.

Officials at the Shelley library said its current location is far too small.

Library staff like to think they can serve everyone, but lately, that hasn’t always been possible.

“At our last story time, we had 75 people show up,” said Heidi Riddoch, the director of the North Bingham County District Library. “There isn’t really room for 75 people in our room, but we did accommodate them.”

And it’s not just story time. Library officials said they have to deal with the problem of overcrowding driven by Bingham County’s growing population.

“We are crowded and we’re limited in what programs we can have,” said Riddoch.

In 10 years, Bingham County gained about 4,000 people, and Shelley’s population is up by 13 percent.

A bond would mean a bigger library in a new location.

“This particular location has no room for us to expand,” said Riddoch. “We’ve got our parking lot, and that’s it. We don’t own any of the land surrounding us.”

Even if the bond is passed, it could take up to two years before a new library opens. But Riddoch it’s worth the wait and the cost.

“A library is based on the principle of pay it forward,” she said. “We provide things for the whole community, and the community gathers at a library. And we serve everybody from birth to death.”

You don’t have to live in Shelley to vote. Voters in the Firth and Shelley school districts can weigh in on this issue. For more information on the bond, see

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