The Llano County Library Advisory Board during a Feb. 17 meeting. Meetings were closed to the public in March. A civil lawsuit seeks to reopen them to public, among other actions affecting the county’s library system. File photo
A U.S. district judge on Dec. 1 extended the deadlines for post-hearing briefings in a civil lawsuit involving the Llano County Library System.
Judge Robert Pitman ruled that briefings in Little et. al. vs Llano County et. al. are due on or before Friday, Dec. 9, from the plaintiffs and a response from the defendants on or before Dec. 30. The plaintiffs may reply one last time on or before Jan. 6, 2023.
Originally, the dates were Dec. 2, Dec. 16, and Dec. 23, respectively.
The hearing was held in late October on a motion for a preliminary injunction filed by the plaintiffs seeking the return of 12 books to library shelves and the digital catalog. The injunction also asks that the judge rule all future meetings of the Llano County Library Advisory Board be open to the public. The board closed its meetings to the public in March. Since the lawsuit was filed, however, board members have not met.
Defendants in the case include Llano County commissioners, the Llano County Library System director, and certain members of the advisory board, who have been accused of violating the plaintiffs’ constitutional rights in the first and 14th amendments by removing books from the three county libraries based on personal political beliefs.
A ruling on the preliminary injunction will determine what will be done with the 12 books already removed until that time. The books include “They Called Themselves the K.K.K: The Birth of an American Terrorist Group” by Susan Campbell Bartoletti; “My Butt is So Noisy!,” “I Broke My Butt!,” and “I Need a New Butt!” by Dawn McMillan; and “Larry the Farting Leprechaun,” “Gary the Goose and His Gas on the Loose,” “Freddie the Farting Snowman,” and “Harvey the Heart Had Too Many Farts” by Jane Bexley. Other books on the list involve issues of sexual identity.
A jury trial in the case has been set for Oct. 23, 2023.