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Sechelt library funding falling behind, administrator says

Sechelt library funding falling behind, administrator says

The Sechelt Library is initiating discussion for the next five-year funding agreement with local governments (Pender Harbour, Halfmoon Bay, District of Sechelt, the Sechelt Indian Government District and Roberts Creek).

Despite a commitment by funders to move toward parity for local government support , the library is actually – per capita – falling farther behind, as shown in statistics tracked from 2013 to 2016 in the “Ministry of Education British Columbia  Public Libraries Statistics”.

By way of comparison, in 2016 the Powell River Public Library received $69.56 per capita, the Gibsons & District Public Library received $50.59 per capita, and the Sechelt Public Library received $31.17 per capita. The provincial average of local government per capital funding for public libraries of similar size to the Sechelt Library was $49.11.

Sechelt Library visits are increasing by approximately 10,000 people each year. With the increased traffic, a new interlibrary loan service, and the popularity of new programs, staff struggle to keep up with the workload. “Only a small amount of the work needed to run the library is seen by the public,” reports Chief Librarian Margaret Hodgins. “In 2016, the staff responded to over 45,000 questions, processed over 14,000 interlibrary loans, and provided quality programs for both children and adults that were enjoyed by over 3000 participants. “

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