Local News

Winnipeg library hours, materials, security to expand with cash from city budget

Big things are in the books for libraries in Winnipeg–pending budget approval.

With about $3.4 million in funding help from the Manitoba government, the City of Winnipeg’s preliminary budget is set to provide over $7-million to city libraries.

Mayor Scott Gillingham said the funds will be divvied up for “more library hours and more library materials and programing, more safety measures, and the construction of a new library to accommodate our growing population.”

The city says over half of the cash will go towards the construction of the new library in the city’s northwest, with another $1.8 million going towards improving security. Already in the budget, libraries will have an extra $465,500 for books and other materials and $134,500 to work with for new programming.

As far as hours go, the city says it will work at having libraries open on Wednesdays throughout the year, whilst increasing Sunday hours by 50 per cent during the colder months.

Evan Duncan, councillor for Tuxedo-Charleswood-Westwood and chair of the standing committee on community services, said this has been a long time coming.

Get the latest Money 123 news.

Sent to your email, every week.

“The closures on random days throughout the week and the hours just wasn’t convenient,” he said. “It’s confusing going through Winnipeg and not knowing where the libraries are open and when they’re open. This’ll bring a lot of clarity to Winnipeggers.”

He estimates 12 to 13 full-time positions will be opened to cover these budget items.

When it comes to security, the councillor didn’t have a lot to say, but said “we’ve made investments in the FearlessR2W program for security.” He added that it’s for programming across all public libraries, which will ensure that people who are in need have those needs met, “as well as other security measures throughout the libraries.”

Duncan also noted that “we’re not looking to make a miliary state here.”

The new library to be opened will likely be leased, according to the councillor for North Kildonan, Jeff Browaty.

“Northwest Winnipeg is growing rapidly,” he said. “There is a need in that far northwest for a new branch and that is funded in this new budget. So pending budget approval that that will move forward.”

The public is invited to provide budget feedback through an online survey or participate in upcoming standing policy committee meetings.

&copy 2024 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *