SUPERVISOR DIANNE JACOB
DATE: March 25, 2008
CONTACT: Steve Schmidt, 619-531-4766 or 619-206-9108
EXCITING NEW CHAPTERS FOR EAST COUNTY LIBRARIES
Ramona library part of 'community library renaissance' Jacob says
SAN DIEGO – The new library in Ramona turned a page closer to reality this week, marking what County Supervisor Dianne Jacob called a “community library renaissance” throughout East County.
"The new Ramona library will be another jewel in East County's library jewel box," said Supervisor Jacob as the Board voted unanimously to begin accepting proposals from companies hoping to build the new library, which, when completed, will be substantially larger than the existing facility.
"We are redefining the word 'library,'” said Jacob, a former teacher and long-time library advocate. “Our new libraries aren't just buildings that house dusty old books. Libraries are alive with computer labs, community rooms, multi-media centers and even coffee bars," Supervisor Jacob said.
In recent years, eight new community libraries have been built in Campo, Descanso, Jacumba, Julian, Pine Valley, Potrero, Rancho San Diego and Spring Valley. Expansions and improvements have taken place at libraries in Lakeside, Casa de Oro and Fletcher Hills.
This week, the County agreed to purchase property for a new library in the community of Alpine. Jacob said the existing one-room library is too small for a community in need of community meeting space.
“Libraries are the new community gathering places where people do a lot more than just read quietly,” Supervisor Jacob said.
The Spring Valley branch of the San Diego County library, for example, shares its location with the Spring Valley Gym and Teen Center. Many libraries, including Campo, Descanso, Julian, Potrero and Spring Valley, are located on school campuses and feature Internet access and offer classes in everything from chess to film.
The Rancho San Diego Library boasts of an adjacent coffee bar where patrons can enjoy a great book while sipping cappuccino.
Supervisor Jacob said the new Ramona library is the cornerstone of a larger "intergenerational campus" in Ramona where children and seniors will take part in joint activities and may include a community garden.
"Seniors and kids have so much to learn from each other and share with each other. By bringing together these two important segments of our population, we are going to improve and inspire the lives of both," Jacob said.
Jacob, who championed State legislation that allocated a greater portion of San Diego County property taxes to community libraries, said she believes library funding is a core responsibility of government.
To learn more about the variety of programs offered at the library nearest you, check out the San Diego County Library website at: www.sdcl.org.