At a special Town Meeting on Aug 16th, town reps voted to adopt new taxes in order to help offset the Town’s budget shortfall. Unfortunately, this didn’t close the budget gap entirely, so Town Departments, including the Library, are making an additional 2% cut to their operating budgets effective September 1, 2009.
What This Means for the Library
This latest cut to our budget (which is about $8,000 – on top of the initial $100,000 cut for FY10) will affect the Library in several ways:
- Reduction of Hours at the Main Branch – opening time on Friday and Saturday will now be 9:30 a.m. (instead of 9:00 a.m.). This has the benefit of bringing Friday and Saturday opening time in line with the rest of the days of the week. The new hours are Mon-Thu 9:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Fri-Sat 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
- Reduction of our Materials Budget – This latest cut further reduces our book budget. We continue to be the busiest library in the consortium but our collection resources are now limited. Donations from the public are greatly appreciated and can now be counted towards our municipal requirement for certification. Certification allows us to continue to receive state aid and to participate in inter-library loan within our consortium and across the state. As so many communities are having financial difficulties, the Board of Library Commissioners will be granting unlimited waivers this year – provided the cuts made to the libraries are equitable within the context of other town services.
- Reduction of Hours at the MacKay Branch – MacKay will be closed on Mondays. The new MacKay hours are Wednesdays 1:00 p.m. – 8:00 pm and Friday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. This is a result of the initial FY10 cut of $100,000.
These changes will take effect September 1st. The last Monday MacKay will be open (until our budget situation improves) will be August 31, 2009.
The Chelmsford Library is always trying to balance the needs and expectations of our patrons with the resources we have available to us. Since these changes affect all of us, we’d like to hear what you think. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact at Becky Herrmann, Library Directory, at email@example.com or 978-256-5521 x101.