The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

October 13, 2009

Anderson library cuts hours, ends Bookmobile

Cuts to make up $256,000 shortfall

ANDERSON — Bookmobile service to local schools will be eliminated and hours at both the Anderson Public Library’s Anderson and Lapel branches will be shortened in an effort to balance the library’s 2010 budget.

The library’s Board of Trustees on Tuesday voted unanimously for the service reductions, which should save the $256,369 revenue shortfall for the library in 2010, according to the board’s budget committee. The estimated shortfall is a result of statewide property tax caps, which are leaving taxing entities with less revenue that in years past.

The Bookmobile will operate through December before being eliminated, saving the library about $75,000, said budget committee Chairman Paul Muething.

Hours at the Anderson branch of the library will be reduced from 69 hours a week to 58 hours a week starting Nov. 2. New hours will be 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday.

Hours at the Lapel branch will be reduced from 56 hours a week to 30 hours a week, and hours of operation will be left up to the library director.

“I think we ought to leave it up to management to be able to adjust these hours as they see business and so on,” said board member Duane Hoak. “I would like for management to have some flexibility in how those hours are implemented.”

Library Director Sarah Later originally recommended the Lapel branch hours be set to 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday and Tuesday and 1 to 7 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday and the library to be closed Friday through Sunday. The hours would allow students to use the library after school and give time for library staff to read to preschoolers on Monday and Tuesday mornings, Later said.

“We tried to adopt a plan that would give us some stability and some continuity in the knowledge the library has in its people,” Muething said. “Also, we wanted to keep an adequate level of service in Lapel.”

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