Voters Shoot Down DeWitt District Library Proposals - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Voters Shoot Down DeWitt District Library Proposals


DEWITT, Mich. (WLNS) -- Ask anyone at the DeWitt District Library about yesterday's election and you'll get the same response.

"I'm really disappointed," library patron Shantell Rene said.

She brings her son to Toddler Tales every Wednesday, and uses the library to study and to socialize.

Rene calls yesterday's results shocking.

"I was sure that it would pass this time," she said.

Instead, the library operating millage lost by nearly 400 votes.

The building's bond proposal was shot down by just over 600 votes.

If the proposals would have been approved, the changes made to the library would have been night and day. However, for now, the library must continue working with what it has, which, compared to other libraries, is not much.

"Our library is 6,400 square feet," said Library Director Jennifer Balcom. "The average class five library, which is what we are, has an average square footage of 26,000."

It's not just the size of the library that holds it back, so does the funding. The average state library has nearly $40 to spend on each visitor. The Dewitt District Library gets about $15 to spend on each visitor, which barely buys a book.

The funding limits staffing, computers and books. All issues Rene said her family relies on, and she said the purposed tax would have been a small price to pay.

"Even if it was even more, I would have still votes yes because it's important to me and it's important to our family," she said.

A family she plans to expand and she said she hopes the library will still work to do the same.

Tomorrow evening the library board meets to talk more about the issue and, although the future remains a mystery, they hope to talk to voters to get a better understanding of yesterday's outcome.

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