April 23, 2018

$600M Library Bond at Issue in California Primary

By LJ Staff

The California primary election on June 6 will also determine the fate of a huge bond issue: $600 million for ‘grants to local agencies for the construction, renovation, and/or expansion of local library facilities.’ Local matching contributions would be $320 million. According to a summary compiled by the League of Women Voters California, proponents cite the importance of school-library partnerships and the fight against illiteracy, as well as greater library access. Representing a wide coalition of organizations,they point toa 2003 needs assessmentconducted by the California State Library, that says more than 500 public library building projects would be needed in the subsequent five years. They note that none of the bond money could be used for administrative costs. Critics, however, distrust excess governmental spending, and say that a ‘no’ vote would force ‘free spending politicians to cut welfare for illegal aliens to pay for our libraries.’ Proponents, however, note that the state’s population of young people and seniors continues to grow.