The top man with the Kanawha County library system says the county school board’s approval of funding for the coming year is good news.
The school board voted Thursday to provide $1.9 million in funding for the libraries, well below their normal funding level, but because of a Supreme Court opinion they weren’t required to provide any money.
“We’re still sustaining a reduction of a million dollars and that hurts,” said Alan Englebert. “But at the level of funding they approved we should be able to keep all of our facilities open and all of our services intact.”
The funding will be for the coming year, but after that the decision may lie with Kanawha County voters. The board voted to sponsor a levy for the library in an upcoming election.
“We and the board of education will have to sit down and determine what goes into that levy question and the timing of the election,” he said. “They talked about November at their meeting.”
Once the levy plans are set, Englebert expects a big campaign for the levy vote. He feels confident the county residents will respond positively.
“Certainly I have to believe that,” he said. “I think the library is a very important, well-supported, and beloved institution. People have responded very positively as this funding crisis has come up and we certainly want to rely on that support going forward.”