Money Issues

NYC mayor urges private donors to help fund Libraries

SomeOne writes "This NewsDay Story is on Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who pleaded for donations to help buy books for city libraries on Thursday, the latest cry for private funds to help a public agency stunned by cuts under a staggering budget deficit. "


Oakland California Library asks for donations

Robin from over at InMyBook spotted This Little Blurb that says with its book-purchasing fund cut drastically, the Oakland Public Library is asking the public to help it through its budget crunch by donating a book.
System-wide wish lists are available on, and at several local bookstores. They include Cody's Books, Marcus Books and Walden Pond Bookstore. Many individual branches have their own wish list, and Diesel Bookstore and Laurel Bookstore have wish lists for their nearby branches.


University of Illinois libraries facing deep cuts

The University of Illinois budget has become the latest gob of spackling to be slathered across the state of Illinois' gaping $5 billion budget hole. Libraries at all three campuses, which have already seen one round of cuts, will have to trim even more from their FY 2004 budget, and possibly see a recision in funds from the FY 2003 budget. The library's math library was recently closed and the current cuts, if as deep as expected, will mean the closing of school's art and architecture library. More from this LJ blurb.

The libraries at the school's Urbana-Champaign campus hold over 9 million volumes, making it one of the top ten largest libraries in the nation, and the largest publicly-supported university research library in the world.


One of Oldest Libraries Faces Closing

Sad Story From MA where funding cuts may force one of the nation's oldest public libraries to close its doors more than 200 years after it opened with books donated by Benjamin Franklin.

"It's nothing that we're happy with, but we're realists and we can see what the economic times are doing to us," Kenneth Wiedemann, who chairs the town's library board, said Monday."


Librarians Target Science Publishers

"Publishers of academic science, technology and medical journals are getting kudos from Wall Street for their healthy profits. The industry's $7.5 billion Anglo-Dutch giant, Reed Elsevier, publishes 1,300 journals and had 2002 profit of $271.5 million, up from $181.4 million a year ago."

"But the librarians who buy their journals are giving publishers their ire. Librarians only see rising prices and future cuts in what they can order. The average cost of a journal in science, technology or medicine jumped 215 percent from 1986 to 2001, says the Association of Research Libraries, more than three times the increase in the consumer price index."

"It's like beating widows and orphans for money," said Carol Mandel, dean of New York University's libraries." (from Newsday)


Public Libraries Become Targets of Budget Cuts

There was a feature on NPR's "All Things Considered," Thursday evening, that discussed the current state of library funding across the nation. As municipalities grapple with sinking budgets, libraries seem to be at the top of the chop list.

"Public libraries are becoming vulnerable targets as cities and states seek ways to cut their budgets. NPR's Margot Adler reports that some libraries are already feeling that pressure - even as they're serving more job-seekers."
The Audio Link is Here.


Librarians picket against proposed cuts

The Arlignton Advocate Says proposed budget cuts drove librarians out of the stacks and into the streets on Tuesday.
The librarian picket came in response to proposed cuts to library services in the town, including closing a branch, reduced hours, and losing 17 part-time library staffers. The cuts are part of $2.9 million in budget reductions proposed by the Town Manager as a way to help bridge the estimated $9 million gap for the next fiscal year.

"In some senses people have become desensitized to the fact that the economy is bad and cuts have to be made," said Kiah. "To see the actual cuts happen is another story."


Budget cuts threaten status of libraries

Helen Freeman spotted Budget cuts threaten status of libraries from over at The Boston Globe.
They say local libraries are facing cutbacks in programs and personnel that could jeopardize their certification at a time when patrons are clamoring for high-speed Internet access and cultural activities.

\'\'When the economy is in distress, people use the libraries more than ever,\'\' McLeod said, noting a rise in circulation figures statewide. \'\'They stop buying books, cancel magazine subscriptions, and stop enrolling their kids in costly after-school activities. Instead, they rely more heavily on the free programs offered at their local libraries.\'\'


Library Money From Around The World

Lots of money stories floating around out there. Library budget woes may cut new books from CA, Library bond referendum defeated in Delafield, WI, Community built library but now it's slipping away, from Montreal, also in Canada, Library closure worries inner city users, In Wyoming library administrators around the state worry that budget cuts, including the proposed elimination of the Regional Library Service Systems, will compromise the quality of services available to library visitors statewide. Bad news all the way from Finland, where Libraries in the City of Helsinki are likely to shorten their opening hours next year. The bad news continues in Ohio, Minnesota, Colorado, Maine, and Pennsylvania.

Some good news?Santa Monica City Council put off some major Capital Improvement Projects to release money for the Library project which is now underway.

Not a funding issue, but maybe interesting none the less, Tacoma, WA Library Board members voted unanimously Wednesday night to spend up to $100,000
for added security at the city's main facility.


On the Politics of Numbers

"It's not so good with money as it's bad without."
-- Sam Levinson

Michael McGrorty writes: "Years from now, when the state and local governments are flush again, when the tap flows once more to local services, when we reach that state of near-equilibrium that passes for good times in the public library, the wiser heads among us will look back at the chaos of this time and wonder if there wasn't some way to prevent it.

And of course, as with all hindsight, the answers will seem painfully obvious: We should have planned better; there should have been reserves; we should have remembered that the curve always tends downward, that tomorrow always comes.



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