Letter: Don’t blame the district for reduced library hours
Ryan Summerlin January 14, 2014
To the Editor:
If you stand near the entrance of the Granby Library on a Monday morning, you see a lot of people approach the doors and stop in confusion when they don’t open.
This past Monday, one man shook his head in disappointment and commented, as he walked back to his vehicle, “Well, they sure are taking it out on those of us who voted no.”
I don’t believe that the Library District is “taking it out” on anyone. They are doing the responsible thing by operating within the budget they have. The largest item on most any budget is personnel. And a shrinking budget means less staff working fewer hours. And having less staff means you can’t do everything that you did before. Which means you have to make hard decisions — like when to reduce open hours.
Ironically, when I left to the Library this past Monday and went to the post office, our annual tax notice was in the box. The Library District levy was the lowest tax amount we will pay, other than the water conservation district. It costs significantly less than the other special districts, as well as the county and town. And the sad reality of that is the small amount we pay for our libraries will now be reflected in the quantity — not quality — of services our libraries can provide.
So, the next time you need to print a boarding pass or grab a DVD for the weekend or use free wireless or find information for your child’s school assignment, or the next time you just need a good book for a cold winter’s night, and you walk up to the library, and the doors don’t open, please don’t blame the library district or its leadership. They went to the voters and asked us to support our libraries. And we didn’t. And now we have to live with the consequences.