Several Fraser Valley Regional Library representatives presented to Harrison Hot Springs council on Monday night, including CEO Rob O’Brennan.
FVRL is building their budget for the next fiscal year, and reviewing information with the local governments of its 15 member communities.
O’Brennan explained to council how the library collections have shrunk by 20 per cent over the last few years. While FVRL budgets for $3 million worth of materials each year, the current economic situation has lead to “skyrocketing” amounts of books, CDs, magazines and movies being borrowed. Increased library use is being seen right across North America, he added.
“That stuff wears out quickly, so it has to be thrown away,” O’Brennan said, and the budgeted amount for replacement has not risen.
Each member community pays into the FVRL, based on usage by residents.
The total amount for Harrison this year will be $57,424, down from just over $58,000 last year. It reflects a 2.2 per cent drop in borrowing rates. The closest library to Harrison Hot Springs is the Agassiz library, which is the most common for Harrison residents, O’Brennan said. Smaller numbers visit Hope, Chilliwack and other FVRL locations.