Support for Proposition 14

DATE: February 15, 2000 
TO: Board of Supervisors
SUBJECT:SUPPORT FOR PROPOSITION 14 - CALIFORNIA READING AND LITERACY IMPROVEMENT AND PUBLIC LIBRARY CONSTRUCTION AND RENOVATION BOND ACT OF 2000

SUMMARY:
If approved by the voters, Proposition 14 will allow $350 million in bonds to be used to construct new libraries, expand or renovate existing libraries, and provide related furnishings and equipment. The funds would be distributed through a competitive grant application process in amounts between $50,000 and $20 million. An estimated 11 library projects in San Diego County will be eligible for funding.

This Board letter will help these victims by allowing for the continued operation of a much needed domestic violence restraining order clinic in East County.

Recommendation: 
CHAIRWOMAN DIANNE JACOB AND SUPERVISOR PAM SLATER:

1. Adopt a position of Support for Proposition 14 - California Reading And Literacy Improvement And Public Library Construction and Renovation Bond Act of 2000

2. Direct the Chief Administrative Officer to convey to interested parties the County's support of Proposition 14 on the March 7, 2000, ballot.

BACKGROUND: 
This Board of Supervisors has taken a number of actions to benefit the libraries in the County system, including sponsoring AB 494 (Davis), which permits the County to reallocate a portion of its property tax growth to the library district. While this action will assist our County libraries by increasing ongoing operational funds, funds are still lacking for new construction and renovation of existing libraries.

Generally, cities, counties and special districts pay most costs for building and operating local libraries. Under Proposition 14, the State would assist local agencies by providing 65 percent of project funding with a 35% local match. Passage of Proposition 14 would allow the State to sell $350 million of general obligation bonds for local public library facilities. Bond funds would be used to construct new libraries, expand or renovate existing libraries, and provide related furnishings and equipment.

The funds would be distributed through a competitive grant application process in amounts between $50,000 and $20 million. A six member state board responsible for distributing funding would be required to prioritize applications using the following factors: relative needs of urban and rural areas, library services available to the local residents, and the financial ability of local agencies to operate library facilities.

On April 27, 1999, the Board of Supervisors approved the Library's 5-year Capital Improvement Plan. Included in the plan were 11 unfunded library projects that could be eligible for funding from Proposition 14.

Proposition 14 received overwhelming bipartisan support in the Senate and Assembly. Supporters of the proposition include the League of Women Voters, the California Teachers Association, California Organization of Police and Sheriffs, Congress of California Seniors and California Library Association.

We urge your support of Proposition 14 to help provide funding for the facilities essential to serve the library needs of our citizens.

Respectfully Submitted,

DIANNE JACOB
Chairwoman