Nora Roberts has donated $50,000 to support the library of Jamestown Township after its community voted to defund it over LGBT books.
In August, Jamestown Township voters rejected a vote which would have continued most of the Patmos Library’s funding, because the library refused to cull LGBT books from their collection. According to the library staff, LGBT-focused books amount to about 90 pieces of material in a collection of 67,000, but that was enough for a small and noisy group to carry the vote and make a solid attempt to deprive thousands of people of all the resources a public library has to offer.
To stay open long enough to reach another vote and try again to secure their funding, the Patmos Library opened a GoFundMe, seeking $245,000, or their operating costs for a year.
Nora Roberts, best-selling romance novelist with over 255 novels and a combined 861 weeks on the New York Times Best Seller List, pitched $50,000 into the pot, because that is as much as GoFundMe allows in a single donation. According to Roberts’ publicist, she also told library leaders they could ask for more if they needed it, but her donation helped push the library’s campaign over that finish line. Hers was the largest of over 4,400 donations, together totaling just under $250,000.
In an email Monday to a news network, the library board said that the outpouring of donations from all over the country, including Roberts’, “reinforces our Board(‘)s position of not pulling LGBTQ Books from our Shelves.”
The library will try again in November to get their budget renewed.
“We are confident we will have a record number of Yes voters turnout November 8th, thus sending a message to the Jamestown Conservatives that our Community want our Patmos Library doors to remain open and ALL books to remain on our Shelves; not removed or hidden,” the board stated.