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Encino Residents Want Books Not Drugs

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With its lease set to expire in December, the Barnes & Noble bookstore in the Encino Marketplace will be replaced by higher-paying tenant CVS Pharmacy, and residents protested yesterday to share their frustration, the Encino Patch reports.

This is not the first time Encino residents have protested the Barnes & Noble closure. Residents are so upset over the closing of their local bookstore in favor of a tenant that can pay more per month, they've formed the Save our Encino Barnes & Noble group, which is now 2,900 members strong and growing.

The group's ire is directed at Rick Caruso and his company Caruso Affiliated, which owns the retail space. Robin Permaul, the organizer of yesterday's protest, hoped their anger would show Caruso that choosing cash over community was "unacceptable." Residents are concerned that the loss of the only bookstore in Encino will have a damaging effect on their children's growing interest in books and will take away an important neighborhood gathering spot.

Their next step? The Save our Encino Barnes & Noble group has filed protests with the Alchohol Beverage Control office and continue to barrage Caruso Affiliated offices with calls and complaints in the hope of changing the scheduled switch-over from bookstore to drugstore next month.