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Boy Whose Free Library Was Shut Down May Get His Prayers Answered

Boy's free library re-instated

Last week, a 9-year-old kid from Leawood, Kansas City, made headlines after the "free library" he set up in his yard was shut down by the town. Little Spencer Collins just wanted to share his love of books with the neighborhood, but apparently that conflicted with some long-standing town ordinance that blocks buildings from being set up on private properties. (Yes, because his tiny library bookshelf was considered a "building.")

"When we got home from vacation, there was a letter from the city of Leawood saying that it was in code violation and it needed to be down by the 19th or we would receive a citation," Spencer's mother, Sarah Collins, told KMBC News at the time.

Needless to say, Spencer was bummed. He moved his free library into the family garage, but wouldn't give up without a fight. On Tuesday, he paid a visit to the City Council to argue his case.

Before he did, he shared with reporters what he planned to say to the people in charge. "I would tell them why it's good for the community and why they should drop the law," he said. "I just want to talk to them about how good it is."

Looks like something he said must have worked. Either that, or all bad press that's hung over the town of Leawood may have finally caused the city council there to change its tune, much to Spencer's delight.

According to City Administrator Scott Lambers, on July 7 the City Council will have the opportunity to place a moratorium on enforcing that weird city ordinance that bans structures in front yards. If the moratorium is placed, then Spencer — and lots of other book-loving kids like him — will be able to set a library up once more, without any issues.

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