Durham Region libraries react to Ontario provincial funding cuts

Clarington Public Library braces for changes after provincial government cut services. Aaron Streck/ Global News

Libraries in Durham Region say they’re concerned about their ability to serve their communities following recent provincial funding cuts.

The Clarington Public Library says it relies heavily on a program that allows libraries to share books with each other.

However, under the new budget, that program will be eliminated at the end of this week.

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The Clarington Public Library’s director and CEO, Linda Kent, says thousands of books changed hands last year alone and they’re no longer sure how they’ll fill that gap.

“Some libraries have internal courier systems, we do not. We use the SOLS (Southern Ontario Library Services) courier system to move our books around, which means if you borrow a book in Newcastle and you want it delivered to Courtice, we won’t be able to do it for you anymore,” said Kent.

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“You will actually have to drive out and pick it up yourself.”

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To date, Clarington Public Library says it has paid $12,000 annually to move materials from branch to branch.

Kent says they can’t imagine doing that for the same price moving forward, and they have not had the opportunity to budget for it.

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