Then you probably got your ballot in the mail and are maybe looking for a little clarification as to what you are being asked. Some elected officials in the City of Renton feel that our library should be a part of the King County Library System. There are a lot of posts here that can explain a bunch of different things about what will happen to the library, the staff, control and your taxes. Feel free to read whatever you want but if you want the condensed version here it is…

A vote of “YES” (we don’t recommend that) will get you:

  • Higher property taxes in 2011. $0.42 or $0.50 per $1,000 A/V and that is just to annex – this new tax amount will not pay for new library buildings
  • A loss of local control over the collection, library services and library programs
  • Library Board made up of members that do not live in Renton
  • Longer wait times for popular books and dvds. KCLS brags about the size of their collection, over 6 million  items, but they never brag about the number of patrons they serve which is over 1.2 million. Not only that the collection is disbursed over 44 branches all over King County
  • One less choice. Right now with our reciprocal agreement we can use both the Renton Public Library and KCLS but if we annex into the system we are taking that choice away

A “NO” Vote (that is what we recommend) will get you:

  • Local control over our Renton Public Library – an institution that has served our community so well for over 100 years 
  • A Library Board with members that live in Renton
  • Control over when and how new funding can be found to improve the Renton Public Library according to the Master Plan Study
  • An amazing collection that will remain in Renton
  • A knowledgeable staff that can customize services and materials for the needs of Renton, not 44 branches spread over a huge area
  • When the time comes to building new library facilites the buildings will be paid for by the taxpayers of Renton and the City of Renton will retain ownership of these buildings, if we annex to KCLS we pay for new buildings and they will own them

There are so many reasons to remain independent but these are some of the reasons we feel it is important to “Vote NO”.

Finally, Renton For KCLS Now is always quoting  the Library Master Plan Study to point out how underfunded the library is or how it lags far behind in technology but they never talk about the final recommendation of the Master Plan Study which state Renton should “improve service levels as an Independent Municipal Library“. Hopefully, that is what we will be able to do, please VOTE NO on Prop 1.

Visit our sister site to get more annexation information, see more endorsements and to get information on our next meeting. Thanks so much for reading.

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If you are reading this blog you probably know that there is going to be a special election in February that will determine the fate of the Renton Public Library. In February Renton voters will be deciding whether or not to annex to the King County Library System. The point of this blog is to give voters as many facts as possible before they make a decision that will affect the future of an integral piece of the Renton community, the Renton Public Libraries.

Some of the things that will be discussed on this blog in the next 7 weeks are:

  • How the annexation affects taxes to Renton residents
  • The issue of giving up local control of the library
  • How the annexation will affect Renton Public Library employees
  • How annexation will affect services and materials at the current Renton libraries
  • Possible alternatives to annexation
  • Reactions of other city libraries that have annexed to KCLS

That is a basic list of topics that could be potentially covered here, we will be covering whatever needs to be covered as this campaign unfolds.

At this time we are openly inviting anyone associated with KCLS or those in favor of annexation to contact us to share facts and information that they think the voters should know as well. Please feel free to leave a comment or if you wish to contact us in a more “off the record” manner feel free to use the contact form that will be featured at the end of each blog.

We hope that you will contribute to the discussion about this possible annexation because it is really the citizens of Renton as well as library patrons that will be affected the most. Please tell your friends, family, acquaintances and fellow library lovers that there are a lot of facts that need to be known before a decision can be made.

Thanks for reading and now let the facts fly.