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By Marcus Huff
Staff Writer 

Library meeting presents new Ten Sleep facility

TEN SLEEP – The Washakie County Commission hosted a special public hearing on Tuesday to address changes at the Ten Sleep Public Library, following a major renovation and addition.

 

April 19, 2018

Marcus Huff

The expanded Ten Sleep Library features literary quotes and artwork celebrating local history.

TEN SLEEP – The Washakie County Commission hosted a special public hearing on Tuesday to address changes at the Ten Sleep Public Library, following a major renovation and addition.

"It's really good to see the changes and addition to the library, and I think it's a great thing for the community," said County Commissioner Aaron Anderson, a Ten Sleep resident.

Along with Commissioners Terry Wolf and Fred Frandson, Anderson was joined by library staff and board members, and representatives from Washakie County Youth Alternatives, who secured the grant to make the renovation possible. No additional residents from Ten Sleep attended the hearing, to voice concerns or objections to the new facility.

"We wanted to give people a chance to see how the money was utilized and make sure it was spent properly and hear their concerns," said Commission Chairman Terry Wolf, after concluding the 10-minute hearing.

On Oct. 17, 2017, the county commission voted to award the project contract to Fox General Construction, even though the bid was $38,000 over the initial, forecasted budget.

With an initial project cost of $185,558, the expansion was financed by a Wyoming Business Council community block grant in the amount of $136,117, an in-kind loan of $14,520 and cash in the amount of $21,929 from the county and a land donation equal to $12,992 from Washakie County School District No. 2 in Ten Sleep. Total expenses for the finished project were $231,380.00, paid for by the above and matching funds from the county.

The addition, on the north end of the current library, follows the design and roofline of the original building, adding space for community meetings and events, as well as a place away from the main library for after-school learning.

The new addition provides space for a sale book area, and additional shelving and storage for in-circulation books.

After reaching a financial crisis in 2016, Washakie County Commissioners stepped in and with help from a grant from Youth Alternatives, were able to transfer the After School program to the Library, under a new director. The program is now called "After the Bell," and hosts students from 3:15 until 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday for homework assistance, crafts and games.

The service, which is free to Ten Sleep parents, has provided after school care, activities, and healthy snacks to kindergarten through fifth graders since 2003. Previously, the Ten Sleep Learning Center rented the old Ten Sleep Fire Hall from Ten Sleep Development for $500 per month, and utilities were paid by the school from the after-school fund.

 
 

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