FYI, a website dedicated to opposing the privatizing of Escondido Public Library has launched at https://www.escondidolibrarywatchdog.org/.
From the website’s Welcome page:
Welcome to the Escondido Public Library Watchdog.
Why a Watchdog? We believe that an important public good, like a library, should not be handed over to a private entity firm. We hold that public libraries should be operated by and for the public. In the almost two years our Library has been operated by a corporate interest significant problems are evident. Corporate protections in the city-adopted contract do not allow for effective, transparent, or even credible, oversight of corporate performance. Important information is kept from the Library Board of Trustees and the public. Financial information, salaries, and qualifications are unknown, staff turnover un-trackable, data is not transparent, key staff are not ‘hired’ by the Trustees, but rather presented to them from a candidate pool of one. The Watchdog seeks to provide some public oversight for our library.
Two years later all we have to show is a decimated staff, a 3-D printer no one can use, and no restored services to our East Valley community.
Now, new efforts are afoot about expanding the library or building a new one at significant tax-payer expense and operated by a corporation. Soon, the public will be surveyed about whether they would support funding for a new library. The Watchdog is calling for other public-operated library options to be considered such as County or Palomar College branches. If you care about quality libraries, we encourage you to get involved and stay involved.