Right Wing Councillors Slash Library Services
City Vision-Labour Councillors - Auckland City Council
For Immediate Release
Wednesday 3 August 2008
Right Wing Councillors Slash Library Services Yet Again
At Auckland City Council's Community Services Committee today, City Vision and Labour Councillors tried to persuade the majority Citizens and Ratepayers (C&R) Councillors not to carry out a proposed $13.35 million slash and burn from Council's library services but were sadly unsuccessful.
Tamaki-Maungakiekie Labour Councillor Richard Northey said, "I am appalled that the redevelopments of the Blockhouse Bay and Glen Innes Libraries have been put back for years; renewals of library books, buildings, furniture and IT have been severely slashed; and manifestly inadequate provision for growth in population and usage have been allowed to remain. Aucklanders will have to suffer increasingly cramped and tatty libraries with outdated library stock and technology as long as this mean, visionless C&R-led Council is allowed to cling on to power. Thank goodness it is only 25 months until the next local body elections!"
Western Bays City Vision Councillor Graeme Easte said, "Suburban libraries need to keep up with increasing demand for a quality, diverse library and information service. Slashing their funding and postponing maintenance is clearly undesirable, not to mention unnecessary."
Eden-Albert City Vision Councillor Cathy Casey said, "A strong public reaction against axing the mobile library caused C&R Councillors to rethink their plans to put an immediate halt on the service. However, the threat to the mobile library remains with a further report to be made to the Committee in October.
"This council has excellent policies which say we will provide services relevant to the needs of older people and people with disabilities so that they feel included in our city. But these vulnerable communities have had a slap in the face with C&R's decisions on library cuts made today," Councillor Casey concluded.