LEONIA, N.J. — The Leonia Public Library is now closed on Sundays in anticipation of a 25% budget cut that would severely diminish the library's services and hours, library officials told Daily Voice.
The trustees analyzed the impact the budget cut would have on the library and the results would be a library unrecognizable compared to what it is today, Library Board of the Trustees President John Kendrick said.
The library may have to lay off staff members if its budget is slashed, he said.
“Our trustees were deeply troubled by this information, as we knew that the effect of such a cut would be devastating to the library,” Kendrick said.
A smaller budget would mean fewer childhood education programs, a reduction in the number of new books and other media and fewer library opening hours, according to Kendrick. The library would also have to close certain rooms either entirely or early each day.
“If you are a library user, it will deeply affect your life; if you are not a library user it will put your home at a devaluation risk, like all Leonians,” Kendrick said.
Longtime Leonia resident and retired professor of nursing Pat Blagman visits the library once a week and said she it sounds like the town council is picking on the library. She’s in two book clubs that meet in the library at night and she’s worried about what the cuts might do to her clubs.
Kendrick is urging residents to talk with town council members about the issue.
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