Excerpt: The task force was asked to look at the library system and seek ways it and the 14 independent libraries could meet the needs of an increasing number of users while government funding decreases.
"The libraries lost 21 percent of state appropriations," Kauffman said. "County appropriations have stayed fairly level, but they don't accommodate cost of living or utility rate hikes and so on."
Recently, some libraries cut their hours to help offset reduced revenue.
Meanwhile, the task force has met with the state's library secretary, Claire Zales of the Department of Education. She asked them to put together a package that would cover all the county's libraries, allowing them, if needed, to obtain state waivers to, among other things, further cut hours of operation, especially on weekends, and to spend less than the state mandates on new items for their collections.