Library Advisory Board meets, discusses ways to move forward without county funding

Library Advisory Board meets for the first time, January 17, 2017. (SBG photo)

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- The Library Advisory Board met for the first time Tuesday since the announcement to close the libraries in Douglas County.

The board discussed how to move forward without county funding.

One proposal is the formation of a “library futures task force.”

19 people would make up the force, representing the 11 cities and varying support groups.

County Commissioner Gary Leif says the group would focus on two main objectives to provide library services.

"First, either on a volunteer basis or another idea that we'll try and figure out an intergovernmental agreement so we can do that and then long-term would be to try and find a solution, a group or an organization to take over the libraries as whole," said Leif.

Leif said four cities are strongly considering volunteer-based libraries, but citizens expressed frustration with last week's closure announcement.

"That process evolved out of the library director presenting his three options to the commissioners individually outside of a public forum and how the dialogue took place and the decision was made outside of a public meeting where people could weigh in," said Joe Ross of Roseburg.

The next public hearing for Douglas County Libraries will be April 5 at the Douglas County Courthouse.

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