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Funding crunch putting strain on library operations

Posted on February 9, 2023 by Vauxhall Advance

By Ian Croft
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

As a community building that is open to the public throughout most days libraries can often be considered the cornerstone of most communities. However, the Vauxhall Public Library is struggling to fulfill this role in the community as it is currently facing financial difficulties. 

Joerg Klempnauer, Vauxhall Public Library chair, spoke on how exactly this came to be.

“Many people are not aware of the library, and what the library does,” said Klempnauer. “Not even the town council members or administration people of the town have library cards. In reality, they don’t realize what the library is. The library was put in place by the town council — that’s how the Library Act works. The Town automatically becomes the primary funders of the library. If you are looking at a what our total budget plan was around $80,000, only about $20,000 comes out of the town council.”

Following the discussion of their initial funding Klempnauer also discussed some of the alternative streams of revenue that the library receives.

“Other funding comes from the Alberta government, it comes from the MD of Taber, because we also serve some people that don’t live in town, but outside of town. We have some people who don’t belong to the town or pay taxes in the town that’s why the MD said, ‘It’s a library for the surrounding area. So we will hand you some funds.’ That gets us to the end of the year through the libraries that are in the MD of Taber,” said Klempnauer.

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