Council agrees library will leave school site by August 2015
For the latest Town of Hantsport news, be sure to read the Hants Journal.
At this point, there are more questions than answers regarding the future of the Hantsport Public Library.
Mayor Rob Zwicker says the Town of Hantsport would have to contribute roughly $170,000 toward the ongoing renovations at the Hantsport School, and pay about $5,000 annually for operational costs, if the library were to remain in the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board’s building.
“Council recognized that we did not have this level of funding in our budget and were left in the position where we were forced to agree to have the public portion of the library vacated by August 2015,” wrote Zwicker, in a recent e-mail to the Hants Journal.
Where the library will go, and if it will continue to operate in Hantsport, remains to be seen.
“Council is now left in the position of deciding what can be done. Can another building be sourced? Can we afford the additional capital and ongoing expense costs that this would cause given the financial situation in the town?” Zwicker continued.
Frances Newman, regional librarian for the Annapolis Valley Regional Library (AVRL), says the last decision made regarding the subject was council’s call to have the library moved out of the school by August 2015.
“The regional library will be working closely with the town and the Friends of the Library to continue to provide service,” she said.
While the AVRL covers staffing and supplies for libraries, the host municipality must supply the AVRL with a mutually agreeable location.
“The town has to provide a space for the library to operate from because the library building itself, whether it is owned or rented by the town, must be provided by the municipality.”
The Hantsport Public Library had 854 active members as of mid-July, Newman said. The closest public libraries neighbouring Hantsport are in Windsor and Wolfville.
“I think it would be a real detriment to the town not to have its own branch library,” Newman said.
Lorraine McQueen, a representative of the Friends of the Hantsport Public Library, says the volunteer group is eagerly waiting for discussions about the future of the library to begin.
“We’re ready to support the search for a new location in any way we can.”