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MailTribune.com
  • Outdoor storytime

    In Rogue River, residents gather to enjoy storytime outside the now-closed library there, weigh the coming levy vote
  • ROGUE RIVER — Tina Ferris intently watched her daughter participate in a storytime reading in the parking lot of the Rogue River Library on Sunday.
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  • ROGUE RIVER — Tina Ferris intently watched her daughter participate in a storytime reading in the parking lot of the Rogue River Library on Sunday.
    Ferris and other local residents came for a "Library Fest" on Sunday to show support for this branch and the 14 others in Jackson County that closed on April 6 due to budget problems.
    Despite her support for libraries, the 41-year-old Rogue River resident said she hasn't made up her mind yet about the May 15 levy that she said will be a financial hit for her family that already pays $200 a month on property taxes and insurance.
    "I'm leaning toward yes," she said. "For a family on a tight budget, it's hard on us."
    Voters will decide on Measure 15-75, which would raise $8.3 million annually by adding 66 cents for every $1,000 of assessed property valuation and would be used to open the 15 branches.
    Ferris, who misses the storytime readings at the library, said she feels confused, unable to trust government and concerned about whether the levy money will actually go toward libraries and whether it will be mismanaged.
    On the other hand, she said, "I think they're a resource that's not expendable."
    Kim Ridpath, of Wimer, said that despite her concern that property owners get saddled with all the taxes, she will vote for the levy.
    "It's not a huge tax compared to what we get," said Ridpath.
    She said she recently went to Walden Books so she could find reading materials for her two children and herself and spent $80.
    She said her 5-year-old son, Blake, used to go to the library to work on projects. Blake and his brother, 8-year-old Brandon, also learned how to use computers at the library, she said.
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