Monday, October 2, 2023
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Lawmakers Discuss Library Options In Jackson County

State lawmakers recently met with the Jackson County Library Board to discuss the Charles Ralph Holland Memorial Library’s future.

House Representative John Mark Windle said the library could pursue grant funding to either rehab the building or construct a new one.

“There’s a chance we could apply for a community development block grant (CDBG) to build a library in Jackson County,” Windle said, “and in addition, we would qualify for the Appalachian Region Commission (ARC) which is a federally funded program, to procure funds to build a library in Jackson County. I’m quite hopeful that that’s not just a possibility, but a probability.”

The Gainesboro library has suffered multiple flooding events in recent years. Jackson County received emergency relief funding earlier this year with a portion going towards repair work at the library.

Windle said he would like to see a new library constructed to prevent future flooding issues at the Gainesboro location.

“I can’t speak for the library board, I can only speak for myself and my preference is a new library,” Windle said. “The current library has been flooded several times and it’s my preference that we find a new location somewhere in Jackson County and start out with a new library.”

The library experienced two flooding events last summer alone, with the second coming as work was being done to repair flood damage from a previous event.