On the November ballot, every Alaska voter will make an important choice. This choice will dictate whether our libraries will wither or thrive.
Many Alaskans clearly favor paying less tax. Yet, anyone who takes the time to understand the implications of the proposed tax cap will see the devastation this statewide initiative will cause if passed. All our government services will be affected schools, fire protection, police, roads, water, roads, sewer. One of the most unwelcomed outcomes will be that the public and school libraries will face deep cuts; some will not survive the cuts.
Our libraries are vital to life-long learning, research, free and open access to recorded knowledge, preservation of the human record, and the recreational information needs of readers of all ages. The proposed tax initiative will reduce the number of books purchased, the hours libraries are open, programs offered and could result in the closure of some libraries.
Help produce a resounding NO vote on the tax cap in November. Help retain local control and save libraries throughout Southeast. We are all in this together.
Marie Clair Harris, Donna Denton, Bridget Asper-Smith, Karl Hegg, Nancy Ferrel, Carla Barthelme, Jim Fowler
Board members, Friends of the Juneau Public Libraries