In response to a mayoral request to plan for budget reductions for the remainder of 2013 and all of 2014, the Omaha Public Library Board has drawn up several budget reduction scenarios, including library closures and reduced hours.
A letter sent by the board to Mayor Jean Stothert lists a proposed budget reduction for 2013 of 1.3 percent, which totals $175,000.
The 2014 figure is 1.6 percent, which totals $217,787.
Three scenarios have been proposed and, “all three scenarios call for the reduction of programs system wide by 30 percent and a reduction of the number of printed books purchased system wide.”
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Library Board President Stuart Chittenden, in a letter this week to Stothert, suggested that some of the library’s biggest savings for next year could come from staff cuts or cuts to the materials budget.
Eliminating two librarian positions, a library specialist and a clerk and reducing part-time staffing hours would save nearly $350,000, Chittenden’s letter said.
Reducing book purchases and online resources could save $170,000, he said. Reducing library programming and furniture and fixture expenses would save $45,000.
The library also has nine unfilled full-time positions that will likely stay vacant, Chittenden said Wednesday.