Letter sent to Mayor Frank V. Hibbard - Cutting back on Library hours from October 2008
Being a frequent user of the Countryside Library in particular, I wish to state the reasons why this would be not a good idea;
1) The hours have already been cut back and the week-ends are when people have more access to use the library.
2) Other Libraries are further to go to. Due to the gasoline prices constantly increasing this adds time, cost and inconvenience.
3) Countryside Library has more use then any other Library in the County.
4) Many people, students, visitors and residents use the computers.
5) The staff at Countryside Library are very helpful, pleasant and go out of their way to assist the public.
6) It is convenient and accessible to get to.
7) Less hours would mean more waiting for computers and frustration.
8) Added pressure due to less time has been difficult for many people to work around.
9) If hours were cut back in October the public would suffer even more. Less time to work around.
10) Please DO NOT MAKE ANYMORE CUTBACKS.
Everyone will feel these cutbacks; the young, students, elderly in particular. If you can avoid this please cutback in other areas.
- Jacqueline Brownhill
I appreciate your thorough list of reasons to keep libraries open greater hours and if it were possible we would not have impacted libraries. Sadly that is not possible with the passage of Amendment 1, with over 67% of Pinellas voters supporting. We have fewer revenues and this has resulted in reductions in every department including Police and Fire. We tried to minimize the impact on any one department, but libraries along with parks and recreation are most impacted.
Understand that the city, like individuals has seen tremendous increases in fuel costs, property insurance, pension contributions and health care costs over the past 8 years. These costs combined with reduced revenue puts us in a position where we must either cut services or increase taxes. The council has opted to reduce services to give tax relief to citizens. We also worked to make certain that we did not close any libraries but spread the reduction in hours across the city. There will still be a library open during most hours but you may have to drive a little further to avail yourself of those services.
I would like to invite you to a public meeting on the budget this Thursday September 4th at 6 p.m. and again on the 18th, both at City Hall, you are encouraged to attend and voice your concerns. In the meantime I will pass our correspondence on to the rest of the City Council.
- Frank V. Hibbard ?Mayor, City of Clearwater
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