Libraries experience budget cuts, ask for community support

Libraries experience budget cuts, ask for community support

HARRISBURG, AR (KAIT) - Region 8 libraries are feeling the stress after funding cuts.

Libraries are asking for the public's help with spreading the word that local libraries are important.

Crowley's Ridge Regional Library has experienced a 20% cut from the state funding it once received.

The Crowley's Ridge Regional Library System includes libraries in Craighead and Poinsett Counties.

Some of those include libraries in Harrisburg, Weiner, Lake City, Caraway, Lepanto, Marked Tree, Monette and Jonesboro.

The Poinsett County Library in Harrisburg is one of many asking patrons to fill out postcard surveys in hopes of spreading awareness.

Twila Ford visits the Poinsett County Library weekly and said it deserves support for everything they offer to the community.

"It's just a wonderful place," Ford said. "If you look around, you can see it's a wide range of patrons from pre-school, to all ages through the schools, and adults, and senior citizens."

Beyond books, local libraries offer free Wi-Fi and computer access.

Librarian Angie Lacy said many students don't have access to the internet, or some live in areas where they can't get an internet signal.

Lacy said the library is where those people come and it's vital considering how important the internet is in today's society.

The Poinsett County Library also offers DVD rentals and has book clubs and summer activities for kids.

The funding the state provides helps small libraries buy materials along with allowing IT support technicians to travel to different libraries to update equipment and software.

The Crowley's Ridge Library System still receives some state funding along with funding from county taxes, but the 20% cut may only be the beginning.

Librarians are asking patrons to visit local libraries and fill out a survey explaining what the library means to them.

People can also contact their state representatives to share why funding should not be cut from library programs.

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