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Check out the article in the Seattle Times about our efforts to save the Renton Library.

Let’s keep the pressure on the City to do the right thing and take whatever action they can to stop the election results from being verified on Wednesday. Come to Renton City Hall on Monday at 7pm and let your voice be heard or just put your butt in a seat to let the City know that we are aware of what they are doing.

We can not let the library go without fighting till the very end and we need to let the City know that the way they have conducted themselves during this election is not acceptable and it will not stand.

If you would like to speak at City Council make sure you show up a few minutes early so that you can sign up. Hope to see lots of people there and hope to see City Council, sans Marcie Palmer, squirm in their seats.

Thanks so much for this last push of support we need it and the library staff needs it – this process has shown what a great community Renton has despite some of it’s elected officials and Renton truly is a great place to live.

If you are upset at the way in which the City of Renton presented the facts to voters you are not alone. There are glaring inconsistencies in the City’s information and they need to be held accountable.

As the results continue to be posted the “no” votes have closed the gap everyday, which leads one to believe that those who voted first had mis-information.

Take for example the City’s retraction of the bogus numbers that had been distributed in the December utility bill. The retraction was issued on January 28th ballots were mailed to voters on Jan 20th – a retraction 8 days after ballots were mailed. The retraction was not highly publicized by the City one had to seek it out on their website. This is not proper election etiquette not does it make the City look good when they are trying to decide “what is best for Renton residents”.

If conduct like this angers you please write a letter to the City of Renton and let them know you are not going to stand for election results that are not based on factual information.

The Vote Knower’s have created this awesome flyer for library supporters to put in their car windows. Unfortunately, the internet does not take kindly to Word documents so I can not link it here on the blog. However, if you would like to show your support around town for the Renton Public Library just contact me below and I will send one your way.

The future of the Renton Public Library depends on us spreading the word about remaining independent and we need all the support we can get.

 

Written by Library Lover – you know who you are…

Taxes and Funding Questions(So Far)
• Prior to the Benson Hill Annexation, Renton spent less per resident for library operations than does KCLS ($22 per resident for Renton versus $62 per resident for KCLS). (http://www.rentonwa.gov/uploadedFiles/Government/AJLS/Annexation/anxn%20summary.pdf). Renton libraries have been underfunded for many years, which is largely the reason a Library Master Plan was commissioned and presented to City administrators and the City Council in 2008. This is also why, after over 100 years of independent library services, annexation is now up for consideration. (Renton’s current city budget supports library services at about 24 cents per $1000 of the city’s assessed valuation). More and better library services are unquestionably needed, and to provide those, additional funding for the library is necessary. Renton voters must understand that they are going to have to pay a higher tax regardless of whether Renton Libraries annex to KCLS or not if they wish to have improved library services.

• Renton Library currently pays several hundred thousand dollars for a reciprocal borrowing agreement to KCLS based on a cross-use study done in 2007. The cross use study is on a cost per item basis. Because the Renton library is more cost-efficient in their processing of materials, KCLS spends more per item than Renton Library does making the fairness of the study questionably one-sided.

• The costs to Renton taxpayers for library services from either system would likely be roughly the same. A comparison chart is available at http://rentonwa.gov/living/default.aspx?id=26505#Q14 If the library were to stay independent (as recommended by the master plan study) and Renton and KCLS continued their reciprocal borrowing agreement allowing residents to use both systems, is there really an advantage to annexing to KCLS? It would seem to be more advantageous to maintain an independent community library with the added ability to use the larger KCLS services and resources when desired……allowing patrons to benefit from the best of both worlds, so to speak.

• The information that has been distributed thus far DOES NOT include any information about future new library buildings, and that discussion will not be included in the upcoming February election. That will be a separate bond measure and a separate election. Regardless of whether the library system is annexed to KCLS or stays independent, it is agreed that new facilities will be needed. KCLS will be the primary decision-maker on any new facilities. According to the Master Plan study, if Renton Library is annexed, “services and facilities will follow a model developed for county wide library services rather than tailored specifically for Renton.” How much input will Renton residents have in where the new facilities will be located, how big the buildings will be, what the buildings will look like, what services and resources will be provided, etc.? What will be the timeline for new facilities?

• At the same time Renton voters are deciding whether or not to annex to KCLS, KCLS is presenting King County voters (outside of Renton) with Proposition 1 to restore the King County Library System’s (KCLS) property tax levy rate to 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed value for collection in 2011. Because of the timing of this ballot measure, Renton voters will not get to vote on this proposition (taxation without representation). If Renton tax payers voted to join KCLS, by state law their maximum library tax rate would be 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed property valuation. (This is $100 per year on a $200,000 home and would provide KCLS services for all residents of the dwelling.) Current KCLS library tax rate is below 40 cents per $1000 and declining because of the 1% cap on property tax levies (the 1% cap was voted permanent by the Legislature in late November 2007).

Submitted by Marice on November 24th

Hello Library Lovers!

I am a Library Lover. I think Renton Residents should VOTE NO on the KCLS ANNEXATION. Why????

Well, watch this blog. Ask us your questions. KCLS, please, please answer our questions, which so far we’ve found elusive. The Renton City Council in voting 6-1 to put the issue up to the voters, individually said they were concerned about the treatment of the current Library Staff. So far, their is intrigue as to who is holding up negotions with the KCLS Union and Renton’s 2170 Union. This blog will post all available public information as soon as it is available.

No doubt there will be a pro-annexation-to-KCLS campaign. Equal time and space will be give to each side. THAT IS THE GOAL OF THIS CAMPAIGN: ALL FACTS AVAILABLE TO THE VOTERS.

Get all facts. And Please VOTE. Feb. 3, 2010.

Thanks for reading!

Marcie