Li­brary pa­trons, re­joice

The Glengarry News - - News - BY STEVEN WAR­BUR­TON

The Alexan­dria li­brary will soon be open for nine ad­di­tional hours ev­ery week, thanks, in part, to a new li­brary bud­get that was ap­proved at coun­ties coun­cil last week.

“Alexan­dria is our busiest branch in terms of peo­ple com­ing through the door,” says Karen Franklin, Di­rec­tor of Li­brary Ser­vices. “Peo­ple are al­ways wait­ing at the door to get in and they’re sad when they have to leave. It also en­joys some of the high­est cir­cu­la­tion of all our branches.”

The Alexan­dria and Mor­ris­burg branches should both see ad­di­tional hours in the spring­time.

The change was made pos­si­ble af­ter coun­cil agreed to pay slightly more than $2 mil­lion to main- tain the li­brary sys­tem. Part of that agree­ment in­cluded al­most $28,000 in ad­di­tional part-time wages and ben­e­fits, which will make the ex­tra hours pos­si­ble. The new fund­ing is sim­i­lar to that of 2015. The li­brary board had asked for $580,800 for its part-time en­ve­lope but wound up pay­ing more than $606,000 in­stead.

Ms. Franklin says that’s be­cause li­brary staff were re­quired to un­dergo first aid train­ing, which wound up cost­ing a lot more money than ex­pected.

Coun­ties coun­cil was also given the op­tion of spend­ing an ad­di­tional $100,000 to en­hance de­liv­ery to un­der­served ar­eas, ex­tend the “pop-up li­brary” ini­tia­tive and/or re­place shelv­ing in var­i­ous branches. It de­clined to do so. The bud­get is ex­pected to be rat­i­fied in March.

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