Library Reduces Staff, Programs for Fiscal Year 2011 Budget
The DC Public Library began staff reductions today as a result of the library’s fiscal year 2011 budget. Many vacancies will not be filled, and the equivalent of 23.5 full time positions will be eliminated. Because some of the positions are part time, about 40 staff are affected. Programs, such as the Youth Outreach Program, were eliminated and staff realigned in order to keep libraries open as much as possible. Library hours will not be further reduced next year.
In the past three years, the library has reduced spending in all areas due to budget constraints. Library hours were reduced twice, the book budget significantly reduced and the community outreach van eliminated. Additionally, cuts were made in supplies, training and travel.
"The DC Public Library, along with libraries across the country, is facing very difficult economic times," said Chief Librarian Ginnie Cooper. "We realize that the Mayor and the City Council had tough choices to make with next year's budget. Even with these reductions, we remain committed to continuing to provide District residents with the service they need and expect."
The library's FY2011 is $35.7 million compared to the FY2010 budget of $39.9 million. The FY2010 budget included about $4 million that will be transferred into a District central fund to pay for fixed costs such as utilities and telecommunication. These costs will no longer be part of the Library’s budget. Thus, there is an overall decrease of about $177,000. The library will have cost increases in many areas including salaries, benefits and operating new libraries in FY2011.
The library will be able to complete and open buildings currently under construction -- Deanwood, Watha T. Daniel/Shaw, Georgetown, Tenley, Petworth, Mt. Pleasant, Washington Highlands and Francis Gregory -- in FY 2011. However, the FY2011 capital budget does not include funds to design and build additional new libraries.