SARASOTA — Sarasota County Democratic Party (SCDP) Chair Daniel Kuether today issued the following statement condemning the four Sarasota County commissioners who voted to end the county public library system's memberships in the American Library Association (ALA) and Florida Library Association (FLA).
"Commissioners Mike Moran, Neil Rainford, Joe Neunder, and Ron Cutsinger – none of whom is a librarian or educator – have decided these two century-old non-profit and non-partisan organizations threaten our outstanding public libraries."
"This is nothing but a genuine attempt to drag a Sarasota County jewel into the MAGA-extremist Republican culture wars. We urge all Sarasotans – no matter their party – to write and call the commissioners. Remind Moran, Rainford, Neunder, and Cutsinger that our libraries' longstanding memberships in the ALA and FLA are not one of the urgent issues facing county residents."
"Instead, the critical issues requiring the commissioners' immediate attention include skyrocketing home and auto insurance rates, lack of affordable housing, and the unsustainable development impacting the quality of life in Sarasota."
The non-profit ALA was founded in 1876, has close to 50,000 members, and is the world's oldest and largest library association. The non-profit FLA was founded in 1920 and promotes professional discourse and opportunities for the library community in Florida, and its mission shares similar goals with the ALA.
The four commissioners can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the county Contact Center at 311 or 941-861-5000.