A Public Library Endowment Challenge established by the Wyoming Legislature in 2008 has borne fruit. Ktwo Radio's, Karen Snyder, has the story...

Listen Here:

The Public Library Endowment Challenge called for libraries across Wyoming to raise funds towards a State Library Endowment with the understanding that once 2.3 million dollars was raised monies would start paying back out.

That threshold was met about two weeks ago and last Thursday the director of the Natrona County Public Library,  Bill Nelson, had the pleasure of traveling to Cheyenne to pick up Natrona County's check for 100 thousand dollars.  "What happened in the governors office,  he, Governor Freudenthal provided an opportunity to acknowledge the public libraries and actually to present ceremonial checks,  if you will, to each of the counties."

Nelson says here in Natrona County they were particularly proud to be the county that provided the dollars that put the endowment over the threshold.  He says the objective of the endowment is to help sustain literacy and education across the state especially in the smaller counties.  With that intent he says the bill was crafted with a tiered distribution format based on county valuations.

"The legislators,  when we were developing this endowment, said, 'Well,  we don't want to have just the bigger and richer counties get all the funds, we'd like to have some of the smaller counties also benefit."

He says this idea is unusual for Wyoming endowments, but  he suspects it will work well to benefit those smaller county libraries.

As for Natrona County,  Nelson says,  the $100 thousand dollar check is the start of an important financial shot in the arm that will continue for years to come.