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More Burlington Library Cuts Likely

The head of the Burlington Public Library says she and her staff are in a "wait-and-see mode" in regards to the likelihood of additional budget cuts.

Director Rhonda Frevert says the library has cut about $150,000 from its budget over the last ten months.

The reduction was needed to help Burlington balance its budget and make up for the rejection of two utility franchise fees earlier this year.

Frevert says the previous cuts included no filling one vacancy, reducing employee hours and the hours of operation, and slicing the circulation budget.

Now, the city council is considering cutting another $140,000 from the current budget and an additional $140,000 from next year's budget.

Frevert says the Burlington Public Library's Board of Directors will have to look at everything if those cuts become a reality, included circulation cuts and staff reductions.

She says it’s too early to tell how the initial cuts are impacting attendance and usage.  The reduced hours of operation have only been in effect for a few weeks.

Frevert says if the latest proposal becomes a reality, the library’s budget would have been reduced by more than 25% in less than two years.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.