With nearly 80% of the vote, Palmer residents approved a $10 million bond Tuesday to repair or replace the Palmer Public Library. The roof of the library collapsed under a heavy snow load in February and the city has provided a temporary library at an alternate site since May.
The city has already received $5 million in funding for the library from the Alaska Legislature. The $10 million bond could be taken from sales taxes, but City Manager John Moosey is hopeful that additional state or federal funding will help foot the bill. He said a decision hasn’t been made on whether to repair or rebuild the old building.
“We are working through that right now, so we’ve had Wolf Architecture, also from Palmer, working on that,” Moosey said. “We’ve had community meetings, taking input, they are putting together some options for the city council.”
Just 6.5% of Palmer voters turned out to the polls. Moosey said that there is no defined timetable for when the city expects to begin construction.
“We want to move diligently as possible, but I think the goal is to get it right for the community as opposed to get it fast, but we certainly want to do both,” Moosey said.
Voters also approved an increase in property tax exemptions for seniors and disabled veterans. Former Mayor Jim Cooper and Richard Best won seats on the city council. The election will be certified on Oct. 10.