"Detroit Public Library to Cut 83 Workers"
Facing what leaders call an unprecedented fiscal crisis, the 23-branch system plans to reduce its staff by 20%, or 83 employees, at the end of March. Library officials also are weighing branch closures and fewer hours of operation.
While library visits increased 16% over the past three years in Detroit, funding dropped roughly 30%, creating a deficit that could exceed $10 million, according to library records. The library’s budget is $50 million. Most of that money comes from a 3-mill tax on Detroit residents.
“When the economy tanks, library usage goes up quite a bit,” library spokesman A.J. Funchess said. “We provide free services, everything from books and computers to DVDs. People come here to … search for jobs.”
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.