September 26, 2021

State Libraries: “Library of Virginia Layoffs Will Hinder Open Government, Preservation of Historical Record”

From The Virginia-Pilot:

The Library of Virginia will lose 15 of its 126 employees under Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s plan to close a projected budget shortfall, and it’s not yet clear which positions will be cut.

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Of the state’s 26 layoffs for fiscal 2017, 15 are coming from the Library of Virginia. The library’s budget for next year will be cut by $633,171.

“Given the repeated budget reductions that the Library has experienced since 2008, the Library has virtually no discretionary money left,” Jan Hathcock, public relations and policy coordinator, said in an email. “We have nowhere else to go to find the $633,171 we will lose but to salaries as that is what most of our state funding covers. Other state agencies probably still have discretionary funding that they can use to absorb this latest cut and that is why they can avoid staff layoffs.”

The library will confidentially handle layoffs over the next two weeks, she said, then share which positions were eliminated and what the impact will be. She said “it will be impossible for the Library’s reading rooms to remain open six days a week and we will be exploring whether the reading rooms can be open five or four days with our limited staff.”

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About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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