The Santa Barbara Central Public Library will be closing one hour earlier Mondays through Thursdays beginning August 1, it was announced on July 23. Due to a general struggle with budget issues, the city requested that the library cut back on its budget, resulting in the loss of four work hours per week. Ultimately, by closing one hour earlier on Monday through Thursday, the library will save $18,000 per year.
This change in hours will be a permanent one, continuing into the academic year, but the library staff made an effort to cut the hours during which the library is used the least. When asked about the public’s response, Myra Nicholas, the library services manager, said that there have not been any negative responses. “For the most part, people don’t use the library at that time,” Nicholas points out. So far, this change in hours doesn’t look like it will inconvenience too many people, and while flyers have been posted in the library for about a month announcing the change, Nicholas says that there have been very few comments. “The city needs a balanced budget,” says Nicholas, so four hours seems a reasonable price to pay in order to achieve it.