Chestnut lends hand to Orrville library effort

Published 4:03 pm Tuesday, March 3, 2020

The Town of Orrville recently got a helping hand in its bid to establish its own community library, as Alabama Rep. Prince Chestnut, D-Selma, went to bat for the Dallas County city and helped it secure a $5,000 community service grant from the state.

The grant was approved by the Joint Legislative Advisory Committee, on which Chestnut is one of four legislators, and a state commission on community service grants ultimately decided to award the grant to Orrville.

“I am more than happy to be able to continue to help and assist communities in and out of my district throughout the state on positive educational endeavors,” Chestnut said.

According to Orrville Mayor Louvenia Lumpkin, the town is in the process of establishing its own library and the grant funds will be used for educational purposes, specifically to purchase aids and academic enrichment tools for local youths.

“That was one of my main goals when I was elected,” Lumpkin said of the library. “We’re one of so many towns that didn’t have one, so this will help us get started.”

Lumpkin noted that, currently, people needing to utilize services provided by a library have to travel to Selma – she specifically noted young people in need of internet access for school projects.

“If we had our own library, people wouldn’t have to go to Selma,” Lumpkin said. “Every community needs a library. It would serve so many purposes.”

In addition to being a boon for local students, Lumpkin said she hopes to see the future library offer GED programs and job application assistance, among other offerings.

The city already owns the property that the  library will one day sit on and already has blueprints drafted for its construction.

Lumpkin said the city has already accepted one bid on construction of the library and hopes to hold a groundbreaking ceremony in the coming months.

“We’re in the early stages but it’s going to move quickly,” Lumpkin said.