Linden Main Street announces National Accreditation at City Council
Linden Main Street Manager Allie Anderson announces that Linden Main Street program was nationally accredited by the National Main Street program.
Anderson explained what all work goes into the report and how most first year Main Street programs do not get national accreditation within the first year.
“Every year we have to do a big annual report that goes to national, so I send you the monthly report and those go to the state but we have one due in fall that goes to national office and we have to go over the budget, policies, what we have done, what project we are working on and a whole overview and it is very in depth, our board took one whole meeting and worked on the report and that was all we did,” explained Anderson.
The report is used to determine to see if we meet the criteria to be nationally accredited and recognized, the state warned me at the beginning of the year that here is the report template start thinking about it but it is measured from Nov. to next Nov. and ya’ll are starting in January so you will be two months behind everyone else so it’s not a big deal if you don’t get accredited but we goat accredited!,” exclaimed Anderson.
Linden City Council approves appointment of Linden Main Street board members at their monthly meeting on Monday, Feb. 12.
“Since this is our first year we had to do a funky staggering of peoples board terms, we let everyone pick if they wanted to serve a half or full term, people who decided to serve the half term also decided to do a second term, so we are reappointing them for two more years,” said Anderson.
The Linden Main Street board members that will be reappointed are Jo Anna Duncan, Anna Eddings, Carla Surratt and Pat Rountree.
Anderson spoke about the one new Linden Main Street board member.
“Then we also have one new board member, Ben Woods because he has been to nearly every single board meeting we have had over the past year plus I have forced him to be on all the committees, so he has been a fantastic supporter of the program and it was a no brainer to add him on,” Anderson explained.
Anderson also gave an update on the Linden Library at the council meeting.
“Behind the scenes we are working on accreditation with Texas State Library and Archive Commission which has actually been very similar to how the Texas Main Street is setup, you can have a library that is not accredited but you miss out on the great incentives they offer,” said Anderson.
Anderson explained why the Linden Library has the need to be accredited by the state library.
“One of the biggest reasons we want to be accredited is this program called E-Rate which is for schools and public libraries and our school system here is actually a part of it and it is a federal funding program that will cover a certain percentage of the internet and phone bill every month but you have to have accreditation through the state library,” Anderson explained.
“So we are working on our report right now and it is due in March and its very similar to my Main Street reports, it is a detailed breakdown of budget policies and that type of thing, I worked with a guy that works at E-Rate and said that we should be good to go and right now they are looking into a program to reimburse any cost we have before we get accepted into the program,” said Anderson.
She explains the process with the qualifications along with what will be available.
“What I have heard about E-Rate is usually the library or schools, whoever gets it second is usually at the same rate as whoever got it first and I believe our school is at 90 percent coverage, so they only pay ten percent of the phone bill so we could potentially only pay ten percent,” explained Anderson.
“As part of that to be eligible for E-Rate you have to be compliant with the Child Information Protection Act which is the public hearing we had just before council started, it is part of the process, you have to have a public hearing, you have to adopt a policy that says you are going to regulate what children have access to on the internet,” said Anderson.
“As far as the building the inside is finished and it is beautiful, if you want to see it call us and we will take you through it, it is absolutely stunning Marlon’s guys have done an incredible job but now we are looking at sidewalks and ADA compliance and parking,” said Anderson.