Agendas and Minutes

Citizen Library Advisory Ad Hoc Committee (View All)

Citizen Library Advisory Meeting

Minutes
Thursday, May 22, 2008

Minutes

Citizens’ Library Advisory Ad Hoc Committee

Thursday, May 22 2008

Ashland Public Library, Gresham Room

4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

 

Attendance:

Vavra, Burkholder, Churchman, Keil, Batistells, Blossom (library staff liaison), Seltzer (city staff liaison)

 

Absent:

Gibb, Mayor Morrison, Seltzer (city staff)

 

Guests:  Jim Bradley, Friends of the Talent Library, Cathy Shaw

 

I.Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 4:00 pm. Members introduced themselves.  Burkholder announced she is moving out of the area and unable to serve on the Committee after June.

 

II. Citizen Issues:

None

 

III. Approval of Minutes: Keil/Churchman

 

IV.       Blossom reported on her trip to Washington DC as a representative of the American Library Union to participate in Library Legislative Days. 

 

V.        Keil reported on the most recent Jackson County Library Advisory CommitteeCounty.  Oregon solutions met with County commissioners who indicated they did not need the outside help from Oregon Solutions for the adult literacy program.  Oregon Solutions will no longer be involved in the regional program.

 

VI.       Cathy Shaw was invited to speak to the committee on possible funding options and the political climate on library support.  Shaw spoke to the research conducted a few years ago on implementing a county Income Tax.  An income tax is considered a progressive tax but is not as stable as a property tax ? considered a regressive tax.  In additiona an income tax provides a more diverse funding stream for the county which currently relies soley on property tax.

 

Pros:

Wealthy residents pay more than poorer residents

Does not require double majority

Is a stable source of funding

Can suuplement/pay for public safety, historic entities, county parks, libraries etc.

 

Cons:

It can be volatile as incomes rise and fall

Is a new tax (people are wary of a “new tax”

Delayed collection time (funds are collected the year before they are available)

 

It was aniticpated that a 1% tax could generate approximately $30 million in Jackson County.  Multenomah county has an income tax.  A new tax can be placed on the ballot either by referral by the elected body or by citizen initiative (collecting signatures).  She feels that it is unlikely the County will consider an income tax until it is “really broke”.

 

Shaw was asked to comment on a two county sales tax.  She feels that Oregonians are inherently opposed to a sales tax and that it would be difficult to pass.

 

Shaw was asked to comment on forming a special district.  In her opinion a special district should be a “roll out” rather than “all at once”.  For example if Eagle Point formed a special district using its current boundaries, eventually the district could expand to include surrounding areas, other municipalities etc.  With each new area incoporated into the district the district fees drop in the existing district areas. 

 

Shaw spoke generally about voters, voting districts and voting trends and commented that histrocially communities with a higher educated populace tend to vote in favor of money measures.  She commented that no money measure will pass in Jackson County without the support of Medford.

A regional income tax has merits: does not fall under the double majority requirement and reduces property tax.  However people are always wary of a “new tax”.

 

VII.      Burkholder reported that Jim Sheppke, State Librarian has agreed to speak at the CLAC meeting on Thursday, June 19.  The committee determined the meeting should be a “study session”, which is less formal than a regular meeting.  Committee agreed to invite other interested parties to attend the study session.  Vavra and Keil will work together to develop the invitation list.  It was noted that all meetings are public and anyone is welcome to attend.  Sheppke will be asked to speak to various models of library governance and organization and various models of library funding.

 

Next Meeting Dates:

June 19, July 17, September 11 and September 25.

 

Meeting adjourned 6:00.

 

 

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