aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

A world without libraries? Sothern Oregon will see it this spring

Libraries in Southern Oregon where I grew up are going to shut their doors for months, because the funding for them came from federal government. Read more here. Thirty-two counties in Oregon will see cutbacks in the next fiscal year after Congress failed to renew the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act, which provided $273 million annually to Oregon counties and schools. The act was a safety net for counties who relied heavily on timber receipts from logging on federal lands, which began to crash in the 1990s. Jackson County is leaving the fate of its 15 branches to cities. The branches are set to close April 6. Some may be closed for more than a year.

Here's a choice tidbit from the article. "Doug Forsyth thinks libraries are rapidly becoming obsolete and should be downsized as the Internet era takes over…. He said if people want libraries, they should be willing to pay for the services themselves and not put the burden on other taxpayers who never use them…. He said the library should consider imposing user fees, and parents should be responsible for paying for their children who use the library. "If you can't feed them, don't breed them," he said."

My dad was a Jackson County Commissioner for a dozen years. I remember he used to worry how the county would fund services when the federal government stop paying timber funds. Now it's happening.

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