What is Happening?
Breaking News - Legal Update: Neptune Beach Says HANDS OFF Beaches Library!
City Council of Neptune Beach passed a resolution on June 17 to formally notify the City of Jacksonville that closing the Beaches Library would violate a previous Interlocal agreement mandating the provision of library services. Read it here (.pdf).
Breaking News - Petition Gathering Goes International! What?
Even on vacation, Jacksonville residents are showing their support for libraries!
Petition Gathering Internationally.
Straw Ballot Campaign for Libraries
As part of its advocacy activities in support of libraries, Save Our Public Libraries, Inc. is supporting a straw ballot campaign to determine if there is public support for the creation of a Duval County Library District, similar to the successful independent districts in Alachua County and Orange County, Florida.
More than 26,000 petitions from registered voters are being sought to place this nonbinding straw ballot on the ballot in Year 2014.
Due to the laws that govern straw ballot initiatives, it is not possible for a straw ballot to appear any sooner than the latter half of the Year 2014, but there is every reason to begin this effort now.
The campaign has the support of the governing boards of The Friends of the Jacksonville Public Library, Inc. and the Jacksonville Libraries Foundation, Inc.
Petitions must be signed by registered voters and in order to accomplish that task, we need volunteers and coordinators.
Please go to our Volunteer page to sign up.
To see an updated list of Times, Locations and Contacts go to our Volunteer Materials page, which also has a handy selection of documents that many of us will need to use during the Straw Ballot Campaign.
Bad News From the Recent Board of Library Trustees Meeting
To comply with a budget cut ordered by the Mayor’s Office, the Board is planning to close six libraries, end Sunday hours, reduce Main Library hours by eight hours a week and reduce the materials budget by $251.000.
Here (in order of priority) are the cuts:
- Reduce Main Library hours and end Sunday Library service throughout the city
- Close Maxville Library
- Close Brentwood Library
- Close San Marco Library
- Close Willowbranch Library
- Close University Park Library
- Close Beaches Library
- Reduce materials budget by $251,000
You should understand that closing a library means removing all of the books, shelves, etc. and leaving an empty building (presumably to be used for some other purpose or sold).
Public reaction to these drastic steps could bring some change before the Mayor presents his budget to the City Council in July.
Then, the final decision will be made by the Council. The budget takes effect Oct. 1.
Stay tuned for more information as/when we get it.
Save Our Public Libraries, Inc. is a pure advocacy organization. It is not constrained in delivering an important message of library support to the extent that a non-profit entity or a public agency may be constrained. This site will serve as a platform to deliver important messages of library support to public officials.