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Letter to the Editor: TIME IS RUNNING OUT TO FIGHT LIBRARY PRIVATIZATION

Editor, Times-Advocate:

Mr. Ross’s August 10, 2017 “Rush to judgment on library privatization?” makes one great point.  The Council would be well-served to take a breath, take a big step back, get a plan, and execute a true, inclusive public process prior to making this historically significant, and as was pointed out, probably irreversible decision about our only library.

However, Mr. Ross misreads what is going on with the library privatization issue in one aspect. To characterize those residents fighting to save their library as some liberal, big-D Democratic crusade is not accurate.

This was not a fight anyone sought.  It was thrust upon those of us in the community who want quality public services provided with our tax dollars by our government.  But, to quote a former Republican official, you go to a battle with the army you have.  The five groups in the Save our Escondido Library Coalition are those who stepped up to save the library from a corporate takeover.

Only one of the five coalition members represents a political party.  The others are non-partisan, non-affiliated, and count Republicans and decline to state voters among their members.  We would welcome participation from groups like the Chamber of Commerce or Escondido Republican Club, but we can’t wait for them–the threat to our library is here and now.

We also have many individual members who are not affiliated with any organization and, frankly, we don’t even know their party registration.  Plus, anyone attending the Trustee meeting would have heard outsourcing concerns from people like Jack Anderson, Loretta McKinney, Laura Mitchell. And then, of course, there is the entire Board of Library Trustees which voted unanimously to oppose outsourcing–hardly a liberal crusader in the bunch.

However, as the decision is to be made by a political body, yes, this is a political issue. That one Council member has clearly stated her position and the other four have been remarkably silent is on them, not us.  It is improper to characterize the Save Our Escondido Library Coalition as playing politics. We’re just trying to save our library from even more mismanagement by this City Council.

Time is running out.  To any Times-Advocate reader, no matter your political persuasion, who want to join us, please sign up for our newsletter or contact us at www.escondidoindivisible.com

And, yes, should the Council fail to listen, election year 2018 is not that far away.

LAURA HUNTER, Escondido Indivisible a member of the Save Our Escondido Library Coalition

*Note: Opinions expressed by columnists and letter writers are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the newspaper.

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