The chair of the Crook County Library Board of Trustees was voted out by county officials Wednesday morning. It came nearly a week after she called for another board member’s resignation and after she was accused of acting inappropriately.
It all stems from a months-long controversy over LGBTQ books in the children’s section of the library.
During Wednesday’s board meeting, Board Chair LaQuita Stec called out fellow board member Cheyenne Edgerly — one of those who pushed for putting LGBTQ+ materials in their own section at the library.
Stec then went through a nearly 30-minute presentation going through key moments of the controversy which had lasted several months. The presentation included specific dates, times and interactions with members of the public as well as reciting from news articles about the issue.
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During the timeline of events, Edgerly had been added to the board to fill a vacant position.
At one point in Stec’s presentation, she mentioned the names of two people who had checked out LGBTQ books. Another board member interrupted. Stec grabbed the gavel, banged it once on the folding table in front of her and indicated the other board member was out of order.
The other board member then asked if it was a violation of board policy to publicly name people who have checked out books. Stec tapped the gavel on the table three more times, then continued her presentation.
At the end of the meeting, Stec called for Edgerly to resign. Stec claimed that Edgerly had joined the board under false pretenses to push a personal agenda, as well as making other allegations.
Stec said if Edgerly did not submit her resignation before the April board of trustees meeting, she would call on the board to remove Edgerly.
But Thursday morning, the county officials decided to remove Stec.
Crook County Judge Seth Crawford tells Central Oregon Daily News that the removal of Stec was not about what she said, but how she conducted herself. The county allegedly received a complaint from another board member about Stec’s actions. Crawford also described Stec’s response as “very aggressive.”
You can watch the full board meeting at this YouTube link. Stec begins her presentation at 35:33. The exchange with the other board member is at 45:45.
Central Oregon Daily News has reached out to Stec for comment, but has not heard back.
According to the Crook County Library website, the board is composed of five members appointed by the County Court to a four-year term with a limit of two consecutive terms.
And you can watch our previous coverage about the book controversy from last fall in the player below.