Friday, April 30, 2010

American Library Association Executive Director is Keynote Speaker at WAPL Conference

Link to April 30 Sheboygan Press article, "Libraries grapple with funding".

Excerpt: The head of the American Library Association was in Sheboygan Thursday meeting with more than 300 library officials from across the state and urging them to fight continued funding cuts that are forcing libraries to trim staff, close branches and reduce hours.

Keith Fiels, the association's executive director, said most U.S. libraries are in a tough position as library usage has soared during the recession, yet he estimates library funding has been cut by up to 15 percent on average nationwide.

Fiels talk came as Sheboygan leaders continue to grapple with how to adequately fund Mead Public Library as city revenues shrink.

According to Fiels, libraries have to adjust to current economic realities, but they can't accept cutbacks that don't allow them to meet growing demand, and they need to become better advocates.

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