Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Library Chief Asks to Delay New Branches; He Would Rather Delay Services the Public Hasn't Received Than Cut Operation Days, Hours

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Library Chief Asks to Delay New Branches; He Would Rather Delay Services the Public Hasn't Received Than Cut Operation Days, Hours

Article excerpt

Byline: MARY KELLI PALKA, The Times-Union

Jacksonville Public Library officials could delay the opening of a couple new branch libraries in an effort to cut some money from the library system's operating budget.

Mayor John Peyton set a $25.7 million budget for the library this year, which the City Council approved. But thinking there would be a time when the library system wouldn't be at full staff, Peyton said the library couldn't use $886,136. He made similar cuts in other city departments for the same reason.

But Library Director Ken Sivulich said he wants to hire 135 new employees during this year to staff new libraries that are scheduled to open as a part of the Better Jacksonville Plan. He said he's not expecting to have a time when he'll be at less than full staff.

So he's come up with other ways to cut the budget by delaying services the public hasn't received yet, rather than cutting library hours or days.

He recommended to the library board delaying opening the West regional library, South Mandarin library and delay the promised sixth day of service at the Willowbranch library.

"None of them are things we want to do," Sivulich said.

Library board members have asked Sivulich to continue looking for other ways to cut the budget.

Board member Bruce Barcelo said he thinks Peyton's office is being reasonable asking for the library to look for cuts.

"I think they're asking us to be creative and to help them help us, and I'm certainly not above that," Barcelo said.

He said he's not sure how the library system can cut costs, but he doesn't want to cut services unnecessarily.

The Better Jacksonville Plan includes a $95 million Main Library and $55 million for six new branch libraries and 12 renovated branches.

"Better Jacksonville has given us a lot of buildings and books," Barcelo said. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.