Microsoft Shares Wealth With Local Library

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Microsoft mogul Bill Gates has never been to the Rim country, but some of his considerable fortune is en route to the Payson Public Library in the form of a grant for new computers and related equipment.

"Through their foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates are working to achieve Internet connectivity in libraries throughout the country," Payson library director Terry Morris said. "The grants they are giving are based on community size and other criteria, and Payson qualified for four computers, one of which will be (programmed in) Spanish, and for a printer and server. That comes to a total of $18,356."

Three of the computers will be turned into an Internet homework center for students, and the fourth will serve the town's growing Hispanic community, Morris said. The new equipment is scheduled to be installed in January 2001.

Another donation from an anonymous donor has Library Friends President Judy Buettner smiling. "We received $26,000 worth of General Electric stock from a local donor," Buettner said. The money, which will be matched by yet another anonymous donor, will be used to help furnish the new library scheduled to be built in Rumsey Park. A construction starting date has not yet been established.

"We have now raised $400,000 to furnish the new library, which will be built by the Town of Payson," she said. "We have another meeting scheduled with the architect next week, and everything is moving right along."

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