St. Louis County libraries tossing out hundreds of books during renovations

ELLISVILLE, MO (KTVI) – St. Louis County libraries have been tossing hundreds if not thousands of books in the dumpster.  Maxwell Mick saw it happening last week in Ellisville at the Daniel Boone Branch.  Mick said, “Somebody could probably get at least $5,000 out of that dumpster.”

Mick said he checked the internet and found many of the books have value.  Mick said, “I went on line and I saw one of them there which was a copy of an art encyclopedia group of 34 was worth $495 in good condition these looked like excellent condition.”

Library officials said the Daniel Boone Branch will close next month for remodeling. Workers have been tossing out books in poor condition. They insist they are not allowed to sell any of the reference material.  Jennifer McBride is the communications manager for the St. Louis County Library, “We have an agreement with our publisher that says we cannot sell them so they are recycled.”

Dominque Paul loves the libraries.  Still, she wondered if something better could be done with the books, “If they can’t use them or resell them they might be able to give them to a less fortunate district that might need books.”

The library official said they can’t give the reference books to charity either. As for the novels and other books seen in the dumpster the spokeswoman said they were in poor condition.  McBride added, “There are a number of donated items that have some mold and other issues.”

Mick said, “I just don’t understand why they’re throwing them away and not giving them away to other people.”

The book dumping and recycling was not only happening at the Boone Branch, it’s happened or will happen at other libraries being renovated.

When the library reopens next year it will have a whole new reference section.