Library services will continue, as will private fundraising efforts, in the aftermath of voters rejecting Measure 17-62 to form the Josephine Community Library District.
The library district measure got 15,474 Yes votes (46.92%) to 17,509 No votes (53.08%).
“Naturally, we are very disappointed in the outcome of the election, as are the 15,000+ Yes voters throughout the county,” said Josephine Community Libraries, Inc. (JCLI) Executive Director Kate Lasky. “We know firsthand the difference libraries make to people, families, and communities. However, we remain committed to providing library services in Josephine County.”
The next step for the library system, which continues to run as a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization, is to launch its fundraising drive next week. The JCLI Board of Directors will also meet later this month and start planning its ongoing strategy.
“We are now at a crossroads,” said Pat Fahey, JCLI Board President. “In order to stabilize our budget, drastic cuts will need to be made. The board will begin the process of re-evaluating the levels of library services our budget can sustain.”
Added Lasky, “In the meantime, with the help of our generous donors and heroic volunteers who make our libraries possible, we’ll continue to provide free and open access to information throughout our community.”