If you’re a regular at the local public libraries, you may have wondered how Gov Chris Christie’s proposed budget cuts – of 74% of state funding for libraries – will affect services.
John Sitnik, Glen Ridge Public Library‘s director, said two staff posts were eliminated following the last board meeting on April 20, and more may follow if the state cuts go through.
“We’re trying to survive for now and keep up with everything,” Sitnik said. “We have a couple of projects coming up to raise funds, but not for regular operating expenses.”
Statewide delivery service will end
GR library borrowed more than 18,000 items for residents last year and shared 11,000 items – like CDs, DVDs, language kits, recorded books – with other libraries, saving money and avoiding duplication
Replacing the EBSCO collection – including magazines and publications for student research, newspapers and covering the areas of business, health, biography, science and environment – will cost $35,136 a year.
will end. It would cost Glen Ridge Library almost $25,000 to replace.
Statewide summer reading program will cease after this summer
This includes programs, decorations and ideas to keep children reading throughout the summer and improve their learning skills.
GR Library to lose half its per capital state library aid Oct. 1, and possibly all of it in 2011
Although state aid is a small amount of the total library budget, per capita aid was used to install the library’s first computers 15 years ago. It supplemented book and magazine purchases, helped with building improvements such as duct cleaning and electrical repairs and technology improvements.
Loss of staff training, regional library services and group purchasing discounts
These cannot be replicated in-house at an affordable cost. By working with other libraries, GR Library has been able to do more with less.
Loss of technical assistance
In the areas of library law, preservation, youth and senior citizen services, and pilot programs. Through the State Library’s grant writers, GR Library has been awarded thousands of dollars in grants for books, audiovisual materials and computers over the past 10 years.
Loss of resources for the visual or hearing impaired
The library will lose the Talking Book and Braille Center in July 2012. Visually-impaired students won’t be able to get textbooks on tape.
Loss of library website
The Glen Ridge Library website is now hosted at no cost by the State Library. This service will end.
If you’re concerned about your libraries and would like to help, click here or contact legislators here.