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posted: 1/25/2010 12:01 AM

Vote 'no' on Sugar Grove Library tax hike

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Sugar Grove Library District voters will be asked, for the 12th time, for more money to run the library - a new library the voters paid extra for through a separate referendum in 2004. The previous 11 attempts on the referendum seeking operating funds were turned down, and it's not hard to understand why.

In 2004 they approved, with the help of a passionate campaign by supporters, the $8 million bond issue for the new, 24,000-square-foot building that is four times the size of the old library. Now the average voter is being asked to add about $100 to the property tax bill - by allowing the library district to raise its taxing limit to 20 cents per $100 of equalized assessed value - so the library district can add 20 operating hours per week.

The library now is open 44 hours per week, one of the fewest of any library in the area; neighboring libraries are open about 67 hours per week. We see residents weighing in on both sides of the issue - it's great to see the voters showing interest in their local library and valuing the importance of libraries in general.

We supported this request in previous years, when unemployment and the number of foreclosures weren't quite as high.

This time, we have to side with residents like this one who wrote online: "With the economy the way it is everybody is having to do more with less. We can't expect those still clinging to their homes to make up for the shortfalls. 2011? Maybe. 2010, no way."

We recommend a "no" vote.