Budget conference: Funding found for Oakleaf Plantation library

Library stacks of books and bookshelf.
The $750K will match $4.25M from Clay County, meaning the state cost is just 15% of the whole project.

The state appears poised to fund a library for an underserved population in Northeast Florida, assuming Gov. Ron DeSantis doesn’t veto the $750,000 for the project.

The House Infrastructure & Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee and Senate Transportation, Tourism, and Economic Development Appropriations Committee agreed during a budget conference to fund a library at the Oakleaf Plantation planned community in Clay County. The money will support construction costs.

The allocation fulfills priorities of Sen. Jennifer Bradley and Rep. Sam Garrison.

“This state-of-the-art facility will encompass a wide range of amenities and services, including but not limited to cultural resources, literacy programs, educational and enrichment offerings, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) resources, art facilities, dedicated study rooms, meeting spaces, and the possibility of serving as a polling location,” reads a funding request for the project.

The $750,000 will match $4.25 million from Clay County, meaning the state cost is just 15% of the whole project.

A Clay-centric library will remove a disproportionate burden from residents, who have to go to Jacksonville and pay an onerous $175 out-of-county fee for library cards, as WJXT reported last year.

“Oakleaf is ready for this. They’ve wanted a library for quite some time and I love that the county is moving in the direction at this time. Great they’re getting this done,” said Clay County Commissioner Alexandra Compere last year.

The Southern Group’s Mercer Fearington Jr. is the lobbyist of record on this project.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


One comment

  • MH/Duuuval

    February 27, 2024 at 9:15 pm

    Isn’t Clay County where the serial book censor lives? Perhaps he could persuaded to pre-select the library’s holdings.

    (Seriously, though, hope this project gets fully funded and built pronto.)

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