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Palm Desert to Build Its Own Library and Separate from Riverside County System

July 18, 2023

Palm Desert’s City Council has voted to withdraw from the county-run library system it has been a part of since 1962. Palm Desert will become the third city in the Coachella Valley, after Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage, to have a standalone library system. The city’s current library was built in the 90’s and has a significant amount of deferred maintenance, according to Mayor Pro Tem, Karina Quintanilla.

With a new city-run library, the city will have over $1M per year in additional funds to put towards library services. Next steps include approving a withdrawal notice to be sent to the County, adopting an ordinance to establish the new municipal system, and negotiating withdrawal agreements. The city wants to keep the current library open while the new one is in the works, and aims to negotiate a short-term lease with College of the Desert. Lastly, city officials must identify the location and source of funding for the new city-operated library, which will need to be brough to the city council in a future meeting.