The Richmond Public Library is cutting back on how long their branches stay open because of budget constraints.
The Library is shaving 26 hours a week from the schedule by closing three branches a little earlier: Cambie, Ironwood, and Steveston.
Library Chair Simon Tang says this year’s budget, approved by council last week, left the library facing a tough choice amid rising expenditures.
“We want to make sure that the branches are open. The other one is the collections, we want to make sure we have enough materials for our customers.”
Tang says the Richmond Library has to maintain their extremely diverse collection.
“We have obviously a lot of Chinese, as well as English books and materials, and other cultural books as well.”
Many of the materials have to be bought internationally and Tang says the low Canadian dollar has put a constraint on the Library’s purchasing power.
Tang says the library tried to make the the changes as minimal as possible.
“The way we are doing it is to minimize the impact. That’s why if you look at Brighouse, the main branch, we have not changed any of the hours over there.”
He says the reduced hours won’t involve cuts to full time staff.