From the Merced Sun-Star:
The Merced County Library received about $433,000 in funding from the Merced Redevelopment Agency, which was abolished a year ago. Since the budget for fiscal year 2010-11 expired, state, federal and local aid for the county library system has fallen by nearly $1 million.
Cuts are nothing new to the Merced County branch libraries. Since 2010, Los Banos is open about 10 fewer hours per week. Hours of operation have been reduced by eight or more at each of the following branches: Atwater, Livingston, Gustine, Hilmar and Merced.
The library needs technology upgrades, most of which are dependent on grant funding. [County Librarian Diane] Satchwell said it must offer computer-instructional classes and more stations for Internet and catalog access. The computers are used by jobseekers and by students doing homework.
“We have a ways to go,” she said, adding that the county is a “prime” candidate for technology grants.
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