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updated: 2/23/2011 4:00 PM

Patricia R. Pedretti: Candidate Profile

Algonquin Area library

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  • Patricia R. Pedretti, running for Algonquin Area library

    Patricia R. Pedretti, running for Algonquin Area library




Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.

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BioKey IssuesQ&A



City: Algonquin

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Office sought: Algonquin Area library

Age: 48

Family: Randy - husband Stephanie - daughter Benjamin, Brian and Danny - sons

Occupation: Retired Army Officer. Currently work part-time with the AVID program in Community Unit School District 300 at Jacobs High School in Algonquin. Also have a part-time business performing a variety of household errands for clients.

Education: Bachelor of Science in Community Health Education, University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, 1984

Graduate Work -

Ball State University, Muncie, IN, 1989-1990, MBA classes

Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, Edinboro, PA, 2002-2003, Political Science classes

Civic involvement: St. Margaret Mary Church - I have served on the Resale Shop Committee since 2007.

Algonquin Lakes Elementary School PTO - I have served as the Market Day chairperson since 2009 and have volunteered with the Reading Assistance Program since 2008.

Marian Central Catholic High School Fathers Club member and Bingo Program volunteer since 2006.

Boy Scout Troop 151 Merit Badge Opportunity Days coordinator since 2007.

Member of the American Legion and Reserve Officers' Association.

Elected offices held: None

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Just like so many other community agencies, our library is suffering from our state's budget woes. The North Suburban Library System, or NSLS, only received half of the $881,000 it was supposed to receive from the state in FY2010. As a result, inter-library loan services have been cut and are in danger of ending. I do not believe our library can let this happen, and I would like to help our board, in conjunction with the boards of other area libraries, develop ideas to keep this vital service from ending.

Key Issue 2

Libraries are more critical to our community than ever before. Unemployment is still high. We have all had to cut back in some way. Instead of buying books, CDs, DVDs and video games, more and more people are borrowing them from the library instead. People have had to do away with magazine and newspaper subscriptions and come to the library to catch up on their favorite news media. The most critical is technology. Practically every time I visit the library every computer is busy. Many people can no longer afford having a computer at home, subscribing to internet service and purchasing entertainment and news media. More that ever we need to service our community with these resources, and it would be my goal to not curtail any of them.

Key Issue 3

Keep technology current and continue offering computer classes while keeping our operating budget healthy.

Questions & Answers

Why are you running for this office, whether for re-election or election the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you, and if so, what is it?

All of my life I have loved what libraries offer to me and the communities I've lived in. The resources and programs offered by Algonquin's library are wonderful. I would like to help maintain that high level of quality and service. As previously mentioned, I would like to help preserve the fantastic inter-library loan system that we have, even if the NSLS is forced to shut down due to lack of funding. At that point we may have to look at contracting with a private delivery service, but it can be done in a fiscally responsible way by networking with other area libraries.

If you are an incumbent, describe your main contributions. Tell us of important initiatives you've led. If you are a non-incumbent, tell us what contributions you would make.

As a former member of the military I understand the importance of establishing and living within a budget, making tough decisions durings cutbacks, maximizing resources and establishing priorities. I would like to share this experience with Algonquin's Library Board to help continue its standard of excellence to our community.

Do you have a library card? How long have you had it? How often do you use it?

I have always had a library card wherever I've lived. I've had an Algonquin Public Library card since moving to this area in July of 2003, and I use it at least once a week.

Space is usually an issue at libraries. If that's the case at your library, would your solution be to expand the physical plant or make room by doing away with parts of the collection that technology has made less critical? Explain.

Luckily for Algonquin space is not an issue with the Harnish Drive facility approximately 10 years old and the Eastgate branch still in operation. If what we currently have was determined to not be enough space I would propose doing away with parts of the collection that technology has made less critical. In this economy I could not support asking taxpayers for more money to add on to existing facilities when that is exactly what was done only a decade ago.

What impact have economic and technological changes had on libraries? How does a library remain relevant? How should its role in the community change?

The bad economy has made libraries more relevant than ever. The demand for services that libraries provide has increased significantly as family budgets have shrunk. Technology has streamlined the services offered, making utilization even easier. I don't see libraries ever being not relevant to the communities they serve. By staying in touch with economic, social and entertainment trends, a library can customize the programs and servies offered to its citizens. The Algonquin Library has done just that.