Save the O.B. Library ! – Save ’em all !

by on November 11, 2008 · 5 comments

in Economy, Education, Ocean Beach

Rally In Front of OB Library – Saturday Nov. 15th Being Planned

OCEAN BEACH, CA.  Opposition to the closure of the Ocean Beach branch of the City of San Diego’s Public Library system is growing. Besides emails to Councilperson Kevin Faulconer, residents are urged to attend the public hearing beginning Wednesday, Nov. 12th, and to come together at a rally being organized in front of the O.B. Library on Saturday, Nov. 15th, noon.

The O.B. branch is proposed for closure as part of Mayor Jerry Sander’s budget cuts, announced on November 6th, as are 6 other libraries and 9 rec centers and a gym, as well as other cuts (go here for a report on the cuts at  For earlier reports by the OB Rag, go here.  The proposed Rec Center and library cuts have already resulted in one protest in City Heights – see this.  Other protests are being planned, including a rally in front of the Ocean Beach branch this Saturday, Nov. 15th.

Here’s What You Can Do:

  • Email your councilperson – for Ocean Beach residents and Point Lomans angry about the proposed closure of Cabrillo Rec Center, here’s Councilmember Faulconer’s email:

    City Council District 2

    District 2
    Councilmember Kevin Faulconer

    The emails of other Council reps are below.

  • Attend the public hearings, scheduled for Nov. 12th and Nov. 19th

Council meets

When: 9 a.m. to noon and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Nov. 12th (times for the 19th tba)

Where: 12th floor, City Administration Building, 202 C St.

How: Attend in person, or watch cable Channel 24 or streaming video at

Online: Read Mayor Jerry Sanders’ proposed cuts at

  • You can fill out this online form to have your comments read aloud at the hearings – your comments then become part of permanent public record:
    The form requires the date, which is 11/12/08 and agenda item # which is item #1.  (A tip o’ da hat to Jenn)
  • ON NOV. 15TH ATTEND THE RALLY in front of the OB LIBRARY – NOON.
  • Don’t allow us to become pitted against other City Districts – Oppose the closure of all the libraries – (tip of da hat to Anna)

Here’s what the Friends of the San Diego Public Library have to say:

Oppose branch closures! Write your Council member today Attend the Council meeting on Wednesday

Dear Friend of the Library:

Last week Mayor Jerry Sanders proposed temporary closure of seven branch libraries.

Please take steps today to let your City Council representative know you oppose this reduction in crucial library service.

The Mayor proposed the temporary closures as part of an effort to reduce expenditures in the face of projected City revenue shortfalls. The Mayor’s recommendations call for branch closures which will be revisited in Fiscal Year 2010. The branches proposed for closure are:I love my library button

  • Allied Gardens/Benjamin Branch

  • Carmel Mountain Ranch

  • Clairemont

  • Mountain View/Beckwourth

  • Ocean Beach

  • University Heights

  • University Community

This Wednesday–November 12–the San Diego City Council will consider these recommendations. Please join me in strongly and vocally opposing this reduction in crucial library service. The Friends of the San Diego Public Library encourages all Library supporters to:

  1. Contact their City Council representative and make plans to attend the Council meeting to voice their concerns over branch closures. The City Council meeting is scheduled to hear public comment on these recommendations on Wednesday, November 12 and, if needed, the following Wednesday on November 19. If you cannot attend these meetings, please e-mail your representative to tell them you oppose the closures.
  2. Make plans to attend the City Council Meeting this Wednesday and tell the Council why these libraries must remain open. The meeting begins at 9 a.m. We have just learned from Council that the meeting will begin with comments from the Mayor’s staff. Public comment will immediately follow the presentation from the Mayor’s staff. Comments will be heard based upon the order of sign up prior to the meeting. You can complete a “Speaker Slip” 15 minutes before the meeting begins (8:45 a.m.). The meeting is in the City Council Chambers on the 12th floor of the City Administration Building at 202 C Street. The meeting is scheduled from 9 a.m. to Noon and 2 to 5 p.m.
  3. Send a letter to the editor of the San Diego Union-Tribune and let them know your opposition to suppression of library service. Those of you living in the North County can also send a letter to the editor to the North County Times.
  4. Encourage your friends and neighbors to actively oppose these recommendations. Please forward this e-mail to as many library supporters as you can and tell them to also join the Friends Advocacy Network. To join this network, enter an e-mail address here and select the “Friends Library Advocacy” group from the sign up list.
  5. Contribute to the Library in this time of need. At this time, the Library needs both advocates and those willing to make financial contributions. To make a secure online donation, visit here.

In communication with City Council Members, remember these important points:

  • During difficult economic times, more people turn to the free materials, resources and programs available at their local branch library. National research shows that during recession, library usage increased an average of 8.3 percent.
  • In the last three months, there was an 8 percent increase in circulation in San Diego Public Libraries.
  • A 2007 Gates Foundation study found that public libraries are the sole source of employment and educational information for millions of Americans. During these tough times, San Diegans need their libraries.
  • The Library is being asked to take a disproportionate share of proposed cuts. The proposed cuts of more than $2 million to the Library’ s $37.6 million FY09 budget are a 5.4% reduction. Cuts recommended for the Parks and Recreation, Fire and Police Departments are all 2.5% or less than those departments’ budgets.

Thank you for your help in opposing these recommended library closures.

Shelia Padgett
First Vice President
Friends of the San Diego Public Library

As promised here are the other City Council reps:

Photo of District 1 Councilmember Scott Peters

District 1
Council President Scott Peters

Photo of District 3 Councilmember Toni Atkins

District 3
Councilmember Toni Atkins

Photo of District 4 Councilmember Tony Young

District 4
Councilmember Tony Young

Photo of District 5 Councilmember Brian Maienschein

District 5
Councilmember Brian Maienschein

Photo of District 6 Councilmember Donna Frye

District 6
Councilmember Donna Frye

Photo of District 7 Council President Pro Tem Jim Madaffer

District 7
Council President Pro Tem Jim Madaffer

City Council District 8

District 8
Councilmember Ben Hueso

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

RAK November 11, 2008 at 12:13 pm

Have you seen any signs on the OB library’s door, or on doors of any of the affected libraries, saying that the mayor has recommended that this facility be closed due to budget cuts? If not, isn’t that a lack of transparency in government? Are we supposed to just show up at the door one day and find it locked and the lights out? Libraries are supposed to inform the public, so are they being gagged on this particular issue? What does the city attorney have to say? [ ], cc: the library director Deborah Barrow [ ], the city council and the mayor’s office.
Veritas odit moras – the truth can’t wait.


Frank Gormlie November 11, 2008 at 4:55 pm

RAK – I haven’t yet, although I’ll check tomorrow (11/12) on the OB library.


Anna November 12, 2008 at 8:47 am

Here’s the email I sent to all the City Councilmembers:

It bears keeping in mind that over 64,000 households are served by the seven libraries which are currently facing closure. THERE ARE NO SIGNS ON THESE LIBRARIES’ DOORS REGARDING THIS PROPOSED ACTION. Shouldn’t there be some good faith effort on the part of our government to inform it’s own constituents?

If you truly value an informed citizenry, want to promote transparency in government and believe in the democratic process, then signs must be prominently posted on all library and park and recreation facilities which are slated for closure; these signs must clearly state the proposed closure information, dates of council sessions on this issue, and how to contact the city council offices and mayor. Given the scheduled hearing dates, these signs should be posted by the end of the work day on Friday.


Lane Tobias November 12, 2008 at 1:09 pm

The level of commitment on Obecians’ part is outstanding. I have secured a meeting place for Tuesday the 18th in the Peoples’ Community Room @ 6:30 for the purpose of discussion but there is a 19 person capacity. In order to make sure we do not violate the agreement with the Co-op, please contact Lane at by Sunday so that we can plan accordingly…if more than 19 people respond, we can find a more suitable place by Tuesday.

Otherwise, I will see you all at the rally on Saturday. Don’t take this sitting down…you cannot simply shutter a library without a plan to utilize the materials that make it a library. I for one would volunteer time during the week to staff the library if given the opportunity.


Garry November 12, 2008 at 9:50 pm

I have added this to the front page of

I feel it is extremely important for the community to get behind this one. Closing the Ocean Beach library just can’t happen.

And if anyone can put up a fight, it’s OB!!!


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