Letter to the Editor

Apparently, the city can expand the Empire Urban Renewal District boundaries, life of the district and the amount of debt that taxpayers will be on the hook for without a vote by the taxpayers. This is being done to provide an out of the way site at John Topits Park for the new city library after taking easy off, easy on prime commercial Ocean Boulevard real estate off the tax rolls and then abandoning the planned library there. Once we are on the hook for the expanded renewal debt and tax life, will the city abandon the Topits location too? Possibly. Or probably. Actually, building the library, we are told, will require a bond vote. Vote no.

Do you believe that the downtown merchants petitioned the city to move the library to a location taking downtown patrons, by the most likely routes, past the North Bend Bi-Mart Shopping Center, past Walmart and for good measure generate some of the traffic by the new little shops on Highway 101? Both going to and coming from? Help save the downtown. Vote NO.

Way before the pandemic, librarians were nudging us to check out e - and audio books. If not available already, probably internet magazines, music and streamed movies and documentaries will be available to check out from libraries. Zoom interaction is likely here to stay. E-book and audio readers have become inexpensive and easy to use. Libraries have money for small kitchen appliances to loan, certainly there should be money enough to loan readers.

Break the cycle of spending taxpayer dollars for hard copies to be purchased, stored for many years and eventually discarded making room for newer materials. Zoom and electronic material costs need to be factored in. Vote no until the city comes up with a plan for a library housing only materials that cannot be loaned electronically.

Why not, as an example, purchase The World building or some other suitable downtown building, tear down the existing library and use the property for that sporting venue. Vote no on the library bond.

Charlotte Koepke

Coos Bay

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