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South Coast Library Gets Key State Funding To Clear Way For Long Sought Expansion

It’s a nice summer morning, and some families are taking their young kids to the Fillmore Library. It’s a popular destination in the town of 15,000.

In fact, it’s often so popular that the tiny 2,000 square foot facility is jammed.

After years of talk and a big push during the last three years, a proposal to nearly double the size of the library is becoming a reality.

Nancy Schram is Ventura County Library Director. She says there will be computers, room for classes, and an outdoor area for kids.

A grant helped pay for some design work, but building and outfitting what amounts to a new wing could cost around $1.8 million dollars.

Ventura County, the City of Fillmore, and the Friends of the Fillmore Library are among those helping. But the big boost is coming from the state.

Democratic State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson , and Democratic State Assemblywoman Monique Limon teamed up to get $1.5 million dollars in the new state budge for the project. Jackson says the project is long overdue.

Patty Walker, with the Friends of the Fillmore Library, says they still need to come up with about $300,000. However, she says there’s now enough money to make the dream happen.

The project faces the challenge of keeping the current library open while construction is literally taking place next door. Ventura County Library officials say the goal is to start the work in 2020, with the expansion ready for use in 2022.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral. 
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