Ballots for the May 20 special election should have already begun appearing in area mail boxes, as local residents will have the opportunity to decide if Arlington needs a new library. There will actually be two measures on the ballot an $8.8 million construction bond and a measure to form a Library Capital Facility Area. Both measures must receive a supermajority of 60 percent or more yes votes for the new library to be built.
Having a local library that can meet the growing needs and demands of the community is a quality of life issue that should be supported by local voters. We urge all those voting in the May 20 election to vote yes on both measures.
The need for a new library is well documented as the community has clearly out-grown the facility which was originally constructed nearly three decades ago. During that time, the local population has increased almost four-fold to 17,000 people and the aging facility has been unable to keep up with the growing population. At 20,000-square-feet, the proposed new library would quadruple the 5,000-square-feet available in the existing library. And once the new library is constructed, the current facility would be used as a community center. Many other benefits for library patrons, such as increased parking, will also result from the passage of the ballot measures.
It is true that there will be an additional cost to local taxpayers 14 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation if the new library is approved, but that would only be about $3.50 per month for the owner of a $300,000 home. A small price to pay to ensure we have a library capable of serving our community and those who call it home.
A similar measure in 2006 failed by 28 votes. Make sure that doesnt happen again and vote yes on both measures and be sure to send in your ballot by May 20.
To contact a member of The Marysville Globe/Arlington Times editorial board Stuart Chernis or Scott Frank e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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