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updated: 6/24/2014 6:05 PM

Gail Borden referendum will be on November ballot

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  • The Gail Borden Public Library board will place a referendum question on the November ballot asking district residents and unserved people near the western boundary if they want to become members of the library district so they can actually use the library, such as the Rakow branch on Bowes Road.

       The Gail Borden Public Library board will place a referendum question on the November ballot asking district residents and unserved people near the western boundary if they want to become members of the library district so they can actually use the library, such as the Rakow branch on Bowes Road.
    Rick West | Staff Photographer

 
 

Gail Borden Public Library District residents, along with residents of unserved areas on the western edge of the district, will be asked in November if they want to annex those areas.

The library's board of trustees unanimously voted at a special meeting Tuesday to place the referendum question on the Nov. 4 election ballot.

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The results would affect an estimated 870 unserved households east of Route 47, generally north of Burlington Road and south of Plank Road, mostly in Elgin and Plato Township.

That includes nearly all the territory within Burlington Central School District 301 currently not served by the library, library officials said.

Based on U.S. Census data, residents in the unserved areas include 2,050 people 20 and older, and 748 children 19 and younger, library officials said.

"We all believe that everybody should have library services," library board vice president Jean Bednar said.

A majority of district voters and a majority of voters in the unserved areas must approve the referendum question.

Any precincts in the unserved areas with a majority of "yes" votes would get annexed individually, said Denise Raleigh, the library's division chief of public relations and development.

Although the library as an institution can't advocate passage of the referendum, staff and board members can do so on their own time, without using library resources, Library Executive Director Carole Medal said.

Library trustee Sue Moylan said she will likely be part of such a volunteer initiative.

The new district members would start paying library taxes in 2015. For a house with an assessed value of $150,000, library taxes are estimated at about $240 annually.

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