Library Update

Hood River county voted to close down the library. There’s talk of trying to get it back on the ballot again in November but in the meantime, as of July 1st, doors close and all the librarians lose their jobs.

Story time this week was very sad. People were even crying on Wednesday (the morning after the election). And I personally saw at least 4 different people hear the news at the coffee shop that morning -every single one of them with eyes wide open as they mouthed, ‘are you serious?’

I also overheard one man tell another that he wasn’t surprised since they were asking for so much (it was for 3 towns’ libraries) and that they’d figure it out somehow. Oregon had that same thinking several years ago when they pulled the property taxes that fund for schools and didn’t put anything else in place (there’s still no sales tax here). So that’s one thing and I also think there was a lot of confusion about the budget and the funding and even around if it would actually close or not.

Maybe this will make it more of an issue now. Something people spend more time talking about. Maybe that will lead to a solution and open the doors again.

In the meantime, no story time for Gus and I after July 1st.

6 thoughts on “Library Update

  1. It’s been over 20 years since Measure 5 and it seems Oregonians still haven’t figured it out. This aspect makes me sad to be moving back. We’ve been happily paying high taxes in Wisconsin for the past eight years (sales tax, relatively high property tax) and have been enjoying the benefits: excellent schools, tons of free activities and opportunities for children, even things like garbage pickup. Why is it so hard to pitch in an extra five cents on a dollar to know that your kid will get a great education instead of stuffed into a room with 30 others with a teacher who has to pay for their own damn art supplies?

    Em, maybe we should start our own lending library out of a coffee shop. Buy some used kids books, get some donated, etc. Seriously.

  2. I feel the same way about health care after living in Australia. It’s just one of those things that makes sense to me. Everyone chips in and we all have better lives. Not many people can afford to buy and maintain their own road.

  3. This is so very sad. I would gladly pay much more of my income in taxes for health care and libraries and education and a roof over everyone’s head. And ignorance is so costly to a society. One of the women I work with, her sister was one of the librarians who lost her job. So sad.

  4. This may be a bit pie-in-the-sky thinking, but for what it’s worth: When my daughter who lives in Germany, and four of her English speaking friends, found that there was no English language library for kids in Stuttgart, they formed a non profit organization and founded one. It was a lot of work, but it is still in existance and is now supported by the city government. Maybe you and friends and neighbors can do something similar. Just a thought.

  5. Hopefully the voters in November will think about what has just happened and vote to correct it. And hopefully whoever writes the ballot info will be a little more clear and work harder at getting the word out. Unfortunately, in the US, people just have more of an “I don’t have to take of the other guy” mentality. I’m keeping my fingers crossed because it’s just such a huge loss.

  6. Is there anything we can do in the meantime? What happens to all the books in the library?

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