Possibly library cuts a concern

While local residents are getting a great bang for their buck through the library, some worried over possible service changes

While local residents are currently getting a great bang for their buck through the library, that could soon change. And that has some area politicians concerned.

A recent audit revealed that Okanagan Regional Library’s Vernon branch is providing more services than it receives funding for – $350,000 worth.

Therefore some trimming needs to be done.

“It’s a little scary if they feel they need to reduce service in Vernon,” said Coldstream Coun. Pat Cochrane.

Coldstream Mayor Jim Garlick points out that it is the largest municipality without a library branch. He made that clear to ORL executive director Stephanie Hall following her presentation to council Monday.

“How much are we actually saving you by not having a branch? Keep that in mind when you move forward with these discussions.”

Coun. Maria Besso adds: “Our taxpayers put in $400,000 a year and it’s going to the Vernon library.”

Coldstream also recently adopted its financial plan, which includes no library reserve.

The reserve was used up on the new library and although Coldstream has no obligation to build a reserve, Besso would have liked to see some funds put away.

“There will be ongoing needs,” said Besso, who is also vice chair on the ORL board, during a discussion two weeks ago. “It’s prudent to put it in a reserve.”