Tag Archives: Budgets

What libraries do for us – and me

“‘A city without a library is like a graveyard.” Those were the words that Malala Yousafzai, the inspirational Pakistani women’s rights activist, used to open Birmingham’s new £189m library this month. A poignant statement, considering the continuing tide of public library closures announced recently. To paraphrase a famous scene from Monty Python’s Life of Brian, what do libraries do for us? Well, they introduce many into the world of literacy and learning and help to make it a lifelong habit; they equalise; they teach empathy and help us to learn about each other; they preserve our cultural heritage; they protect our right to know and to learn; they build communities; they strengthen and advance us as a nation; they empower us as individuals.” (via The Guardian)

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Jacksonville main library may have to close on Saturdays due to budget cuts

“Jacksonville’s Main Library will close on Saturdays beginning in October unless the City Council restores funding in the pending 2013-14 budget. The library Board of Trustees in a unanimous vote Thursday approved the closure, calling it a difficult decision between less-than desirable options. “We don’t want to see access to any library reduced,” board Chairwoman Brenda Simmons-Hutchins said after the meeting. “The board’s decision today was our response to the difficult situation we are facing in losing eight hours of operations at the Main Library.” (via Florida Times Union)

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Libraries, parks funding restored in new city budget

“The City Council on Thursday adopted a $2.3 billion budget that keeps libraries functioning seven days a week and restores parks funding through a $1 increase to the city’s monthly environmental fee. Council members largely praised City Manager Sheryl Sculley and her budget staff for deft handling of the budget during tight fiscal times. Not everyone was pleased with the final spending plan. Council members Elisa Chan and Carlton Soules voted against almost everything in the budget, saying the believed that the council was acting irresponsibly and living beyond its means.” (via San Antonio Express-News)

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One-year reprieve for Miami-Dade libraries means cuts may still loom

“Miami-Dade commissioners unexpectedly granted libraries a one-year reprieve Wednesday, though painful cutbacks will loom over the system unless the county comes up with a long-term plan for to fund it. By raiding one-time reserves to avoid scaling back library hours and laying off 169 workers, the commission put off making a difficult choice between cutting services or raising the property-tax rate, saying it hopes to find a middle path over the next few months.” (via Miami Herald)

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Library Workers Protest Possible Miami-Dade Layoffs

“Nearly a dozen Miami-Dade library workers protested looming layoffs Sunday. They gathered in front of the Kendall library with signs calling attention to proposed budget cuts. The cuts could leave nearly 200 library workers out of a job and four libraries closed.” (via CBS Miami)

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USF students protest library hours cutback with overnight ‘sit-out’

Library hours cut as university spending shrinks

“While more than 1,000 students have signed online petitions and liked Facebook pages, calling for the restoration of the USF Tampa Library hours to its 24/5 schedule, different departments across the university are discussing who should pay for the additional funds it takes to keep the Library open in a time of financial shrinking. The Library’s reduced hours, now open from 7:30 a.m. until midnight on Mondays through Thursdays and until 6 p.m. on Fridays, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and from noon to midnight on Sundays, are part of the financial belt-tightening students will begin to feel as the university embarks on its plans to become more financially sound.” (via University of South Florida)

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Miami-Dade County will no longer close any public libraries

“Nearly six weeks after cautioning it could shutter 22 public libraries, Miami-Dade County has found a way to keep all 49 facilities open at least some of the time, offering stripped-down services. In all, 169 library workers — more than a third of the department’s 461 employees — would lose their jobs by Oct. 1, and libraries would begin to operate about three-quarters of the hours they do now, Mayor Carlos Gimenez informed county commissioners late Friday.” (via Miami Herald)

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Shrinking the Library System Is A Loss for New Yorkers

“The usage of New York City’s libraries is way up: 40 percent programmatically, nearly 60 percent in terms of circulation. The public demand for physical books is up too. More people visited public libraries in New York than every major sports team and every major cultural institution combined. Why then are we selling city libraries and shrinking the library system? Why are libraries being underfunded, when we know the they cost a fraction of the city’s budget to fund them.”via Huffington Post)

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Miami-Dade reduces number of libraries on chopping block to four

“Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez, who last month warned that 22 of the county’s 49 public libraries could be shut down this fall due to deep budget cuts, announced Thursday that his administration now expects to shutter only four. The dramatic reduction, while welcome news to library supporters who have campaigned to keep the facilities open, still comes with plenty of pain. Libraries across the board will likely shorten their hours and be staffed by fewer librarians.” (via MiamiHerald.com)

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