Gila County libraries join COPPER consortium

David Sowders/Arizona Silver Belt With their new COPPER consortium membership, Gila County’s libraries will continue providing the community with digital resources.

By joining a recently formed nonprofit last month, the Gila County Library District will be able to continue offering digital resources to the communities they serve.

The Gila County Board of Supervisors, meeting as the library district’s board of directors on Dec. 15, authorized the district to join the Consortium of Partners Procuring Electronic Resources (COPPER).

“While our COPPER partnership is new, its purpose really isn’t,” said Gila County Public Services Librarian Elaine Votruba. “We’ve been purchasing an array of digital resources for years through State of Arizona agencies - everything from online language tutorial programs to online access to the most popular magazines in our periodicals section. The only real difference is that we are now purchasing these directly through our COPPER partnership.”

For the last several years, the Arizona State Library has been contracting to provide digital resources to state public libraries. County library districts and large city libraries have paid a pro-rated share, based on population served and augmented by federal grants awarded to the Arizona State Library. COPPER was established in 2020 to continue providing Arizona libraries with those resources. With no fee to join, it provides members with information on products, services and contracts.

Digital resources include TumbleBooks for K-6 readers,’s database of audio books, PowerSpeak language tutorial, links to e-books at, and StoryTime videos on the library district’s Facebook page (

“Those are just a few examples of digital resources our libraries already offer, and our librarians meet throughout the year to discuss how we can improve access – such as the contactless curbside pickup we began to offer during this year of Covid-19 precautions,” said Votruba. “We’re proud to offer online language tutorials, magazines, enriching learning for children and digital resources to all through COPPER.”

Gila County libraries also have free WiFi; building access is limited due to Covid-19 precautions, but residents can park at the library of their choice and connect on their laptop or wireless device. The Globe and Payson Public Libraries currently require appointments in advance, in order to ensure social distancing. Appointments for the Globe Library can be made by calling 425-6111; for the Payson Library, call 474-9260. Miami Memorial Library does not require appointments; it is open Tuesday-Friday from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. - noon. For questions, call Miami Library staff at 473-2621.

To learn more about the Gila County Library District and the digital resources its 17 libraries offer, visit


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