Library Supporters Go Back In Front Of City Council

BILOXI (WLOX) -- "We the People," a vocal group working for months to save the Gulfport Public library is going back before the city council.

Deborah Peterson, a group member, says the group's decision to go back before the council was made, in part, after attending a meeting of the Harrison County Board of Supervisors.

During the meeting, the board's attorney, Joe Meadows, said the county had to uphold an agreement it made with the city to tear the library down. The county received the deed to the land based upon that agreement.

Peterson says under this condition their request to the city is a simple one.

"To request that they make a motion once again to rescind the demolition order that they had passed to the board of supervisors," says Peterson. "I think the group would like to know why if the board of supervisors has a legal attorney on staff and the city council has a legal attorney on staff, it took the public to ask why they did not sent a letter of intent."

Peterson says the letter of intent to tear the building down should have gone to the state's Department of Archives and History.  Last month, the department recommended the library be considered a Mississippi landmark.

Peterson says the group hopes that alone will encourage council member to rethink its previous resolution to tear the building down.

"We hope that through this journey, something has been said that will sway one or two council members, hopefully all of them," Peterson says.

The "permit committee" for archives and history will likely vote on whether to approve the landmark recommendation this month.  The board of supervisors sent a letter of objection in making the library a landmark, stating concerns over finances and whether the building would actually be used as a library.

The Archives and History board is accepting public comments about the library until July 19th. You can send comments to or P.O. Box 571, Jackson, Mississippi 39205-0571.