Radio show host asks for reform at downtown library

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Posted: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 9:41 pm | Updated: 9:06 pm, Mon Mar 31, 2014.

SARASOTA, Fla. - A Sarasota radio host says he is standing up for fellow Downtown residents and business owners, asking for changes at the Selby Public Library.

"It's very dangerous," said Phil Grande, the host of the nationally syndicated radio program, "Phil's Gang."

Grande says the Selby Library resembles a homeless shelter, and it's management isn't doing enough to tackle the issue.

"They do not follow the Mission Statement. They do not follow the Code of Conduct. They throw it out the window," said Grande.

Last week, a homeless individual stabbed another man inside the library.

The Code of Conduct states: Patron conduct, dress, and personal hygiene shall conform to the community standard for public places.

It also prohibits, among other things:

  • Drunk or disorderly conduct
  • Theft, abuse or vandalism of library materials, equipment or property
  • Bare feet and/or being "shirtless"
  • Possession of weapons

We attempted to reach Liz Nolan, the Director of the Selby Library, who is also a Board Member with the Suncoast Partnership to End Homelessness. We never heard back.

"She should keep that activism at City Hall. Nor bring it into the library," said Grande.

"If anything, the library director is doing her job. You can't ban anyone from the library," said Michael Barfield, the Chapter Vice President with the ACLU. "It would be more helpful if Phil would focus on efforts to reduce homelessness in our community, rather than throw fuel on a fire."

Grande says he understands it's a public place.

"Anyone can go to the library. It's public, but you have to follow the rules," he said.

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
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Welcome to the discussion.


  • woodu posted at 5:49 pm on Mon, Mar 24, 2014.

    woodu Posts: 1

    i am so tired of political bullies in our community putting their two cents into subjects they know nothing about. Mr Grande might know alot about stock options, but he has no idea what he is talking about when it comes to the shelby library. In 2006 he boldly stated that 80% of the patrons were homeless, theirfore the county was wasting money funding its budget. Either Mr Grande dont know how to count (which im sure he does) or he has never been to the shelby library except to take pictures. You should be ashamed of yourself for the way you have bullied Liz Nolan just because of her membership in the Suncoast Partnership to End Homelessness. Mr Grande you know as i do that the problems at that library is not due to Miss Nolan's lack of policy enforcement, its due to the city and counties leaders sticking their heads in the sand and wishing the problem will go away and Miss Nolan is the goat. The new policies at the library will have the city once again in court, paying high priced lawyers mega fees, just to get their policies overturned by some court, again. Remember this Mr Grange from a 20 plus year resident, everyone that carries a backpack is not homeless. It might be someone like me, who loves the city, and love going to libraries.

  • Etienne posted at 8:17 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

    Etienne Posts: 26

    Alas, a once beautiful library and excellent community resource is slowly being trashed in the name of political correctness. So very American these days!


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