February 25, 2018

Salinas to Close Libraries if Vote Doesn’t Pass

By LJ Staff

The Salinas City Council voted six to one to close the city’s three libraries as part of belt-tightening tactics to stem a $9.2 million budget deficit for 2005-2006, the Monterey County Herald reported. Along with libraries, several recreation centers and as many as half the maintenance staff department also affected. As these cuts only amount to a $7 million savings, up to 71 full-time positions on the city payroll could be trimmed.

Salinas has three tax measures on the November ballot, leaving critics to claim that the draconian measures are a scare tactic to assure their passage. If the measures aren’t approved, the closings will occur in the first half of 2005. City Manager Dave Mora stated that even if all three are approved by voters, the additional taxes still might not generate enough extra money to prevent the cuts. A weak local economy, the reduction of $1.5 million in state aid, and increased expenses has contributed to what Mora characterized as "probably the worst time in the history of the city of Salinas."