At a political forum in October, candidates for offices in the Wilkesboros all said the same thing on an important issue. If elected, each vowed that job creation would be a top priority. 

I have to wonder what types of jobs they think we can attract to Wilkes County. I say that because as I write, our Wilkes County Commissioners are considering the withdrawal of our county libraries from the Appalachian Regional Library system. 

As freely as information, literature, periodicals and other resources presently flow through the regional system and into our libraries, I can’t imagine how that existing network’s efficiency could be improved upon by a group of locally-appointed individuals. So, if we could gauge that “flow rate,” and found it to be at or near “maximum” or “full-throttle” right now, then what kind of change can we expect to see if we leave the regional system? 

In my opinion, all that’s left is something less: a less-than-optimum, “throttled-back” condition. Less readily available information and resources than we have now. Fewer choices. And at greater expense to the county.

Why would any county want that? Who benefits from less information being readily available to citizens? Or fewer choices? What kind of message does that send to the citizens of that county? 

And what kind of message do we send to decision-makers of companies who might consider Wilkes County for a new plant or facility? Are we really “open for business”?


North Wilkesboro, N.C.

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