Governor Strickland has proposed a last minute change to the State Budget: he proposes to cut funding for Ohio’s Libraries by an additional $100 million dollars a year for the next two years.
Public libraries are a vital lifeline to job hunting information, education, and family fun in a down economy. Greene County Public Library receives 55% of its funding from the State of Ohio. This funding rises and falls with the State’s income, and funding for libraries has already fallen dramatically in the current recession. If the Governor’s new cut became permanent, it would devastate the services the library provides to children, teens, adults, and seniors throughout Greene County.
Under the Governor’s proposal, the funding for Ohio’s libraries would drop to nearly half of 2008 levels. The cost to the Greene County Public Library would be $2.2 million in 2009 and $3.5 million in 2010. The cut for this year would be in addition to the $3.3 million reduction the library is already facing because of declining state tax revenues.
The Greene County Public Library has already absorbed large drops in state funding, even while staff has been working hard not to reduce services for patrons. But, without this key state funding, the library will have to make deep cuts in hours, eliminate services, and possibly even close branches.
You can help Greene County Public Library protect the funding that will keep it doing what it does best — serving you — by contacting your representatives and the Governor’s office by phone and email this week to let them how you feel about the Governor’s proposal: the decision on this proposal will be made before July 1.
Governor Ted Strickland
(614) 644-4357 (Fax)
Representative Jarrod Martin
(614) 719-3970 (Fax)
Representative Robert Hackett
(614) 719-6984 (Fax)
Senator Chris Widener
(Note: To speed up the process, you can write one email with your name and address, and then cut and paste it into your email to the legislators.)