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Library to Concentrate Efforts & Resources into Busiest Times.

For Immediate Release

Library Director, John Taube reported to the Library Board that “the Allegany County Library System is faced with the reality of our third year of level funding from our two primary sources (State and County Government).” Given this reality, the Allegany County Library Board of Trustees adopted a balanced FY2010 operating budget by making adjustments to operations in order to maximize the delivery of library services to the community.

At the beginning of the budgeting process the Library Board of Trustees prepared a set of budget drafting guidelines. The guidelines are:
• Maintain core library services and functions,
• Preserve positions and benefits of library employees,
• Minimize the disruption for access to library services and resources, and
• Recognize the finite resources of government funding agencies.

Given the efforts of the County to maintain our funding at the current level in the face of extraordinary economic times, we are balancing our budget with cuts to library expenses, a onetime transfer of reserve accounts funding of $25,000 and an increase in user fees. Operating efficiencies were identified by user and usage studies over the last year. The studies revealed areas of operation and services which would improve efficiency the most.

Effective July 1, 2009,

The Washington Street, South Cumberland, LaVale, and Frostburg libraries will have the following hours of operation:

Monday 10 AM – 8 PM
Tuesday 10 AM – 8 PM
Wednesday 10 AM – 8 PM
Thursday, 10 AM – 8 PM
Friday 10 AM – 5 PM
Saturday 10 AM – 5 PM.

The George’s Creek Regional Library will have the following hours of operation:

Monday 10 AM– 5 PM
Tuesday 10 AM- 5 PM
Wednesday 2 PM – 8 PM
Thursday 2 PM – 8 PM
Friday 10 AM – 5 PM
Saturday 10 AM – 5 PM.

The Westernport Library will have the following hours of operation:

Monday 2 PM – 8 PM
Tuesday 2 PM – 8 PM
Wednesday 10 AM – 5 PM
Thursday 10 AM – 5 PM
Friday 10 AM – 5 PM
Saturday 10 AM – 5 PM.

Library staff will not be receiving cost of living adjustments nor will merit increases be granted in the upcoming fiscal year. The Library System will cut nearly $35,000 in spending from Facilities and Services expenditures.

Effective July 1, 2009, the cost per overdue adult print materials per day will be $0.20 per day and the cost per overdue children’s print materials per day will be $0.10 per day. The cost for printing and photocopying will be $0.20 per sheet. These fees are in line with other Maryland Public Libraries and put Allegany’s rate in the “middle of the range.” Taube continued “overdue fines are not charged on days that the library system is closed and library users have the option of renewing material at any branch or over the telephone and at the library web site.”

In order to balance the FY2010 operating budget, the Board approved a onetime transfer of $25,000 from reserve accounts. The Board expressed the desire that reserve account funding not be necessary next year as they noted it limits the library system’s options in the future.

Many library services will continue to be available seven days a week, twenty-four hours a day from your home, school, or office computer. These services include online tutoring; online story time; book reviews and readers advisory; computer classes; guides and tutorials; auto repair manuals; genealogical resources; SAT and other test preparation software; home improvement manuals; and thousands of articles, from magazines, newspapers, and journals included in our nearly 50 database subscriptions.

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