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Six library branches facing closure

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Updated: 6/17/2013 11:11 am
JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- Six local libraries are on the chopping block.

It's all because the latest budget proposal has a wide funding gap. They include Brentwood, Maxville, Willowbranch, University Park, the Beaches and San Marco.

The reason is a nearly $2.4 million decrease in the library budget.

Bill Brinton is trying to change it. He's part of the group, Save Jax Libraries.

On Friday, the group turned in petitions trying to get a proposal on the ballot to create an independent tax district to fund the library. It wouldn't mean an increase in taxes. It would set aside a portion of the taxes already collected to help support the library.

"It's simply weighing whether they want to have the best library system," said Brinton.

The proposed budget has a $64 million hole in it. The approval of the police and fire pension fund could have a big impact on that. The pension proposal has not been voted on yet. Until the pension problem is fixed, cuts are a reality. "The first step is to weigh in and see what the voters believe is the level of support in this county," said Brinton. The group needs 26,000 signatures to get it on the ballot.

Some of the other cuts in the proposed budget include, all libraries being closed on Sunday and reducing the materials budget by 250 thousand dollars. The mayor doesn't have to give his final budget to city council until July 15th.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of Action News Jacksonville

Realchange - 6/15/2013 11:57 AM
0 Votes
Strange we have internet now days but there is no free library online. Ever notice that greatest supposed freedom of information device to exist has poped up in the last 20 years, but for public citizens there is no "free" online system. You must go in register, get a card, check a book out and only keep it a month or 2 then must return it or face fines. Why has the nation lagged behind in a free online library?

041643jm - 6/15/2013 8:28 AM
0 Votes
It makes no sense to close ANY library; find the money to keep them open!

Happy Mom - 6/15/2013 6:03 AM
0 Votes
Let me get this straight...San Marco library is on the list of closures? The city just spent THOUSANDS on that building and remodeling just a few years back. The library is ALWAYS busy in addition to the adjacent community center being busy. San Marco students that attend Landon NEED that library as do the many senior citizens who live nearby. Please do not include San Marco on that closings list. That makes no sense!
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