Robersonville money issues causing cuts to library, decreased staff, operation hours

Local

ROBERSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — The financial hardships the town of Robersonville is currently battling has now impacted another department.

Back in February, town leaders suspended its recreation department. Now, the town’s library service is being impacted.

“If the library hours are decreased, there’s no way they can serve all the people that are currently being served through the library because we are such a rural area,” said Robersonville native Karen Hardison. “Many of our families do not have internet access because internet doesn’t go to the homes.”

Hardison and Tina Boyce, also a Robersonville native, said the library is a fixture in the community that families need. The Local Government Commission has taken over the town’s finances. The LGC created a new budget with makes cuts to the library, including a full-time staff position.

“I don’t think its a great idea because its a resource being taken away from our children,” said Boyce.

“I’ve taken yoga classes, craft classes, checked out books, used the internet. I’ve used the printer here when my printer is down, so when the hours decreased, all of those resources would go away from our community,” Hardison said.

While many people in the community are concerned, the town manager is reassuring the public the library is not closing.

“The library has three part-time positions, one is vacant but they are going to use their part-time positions to keep the library open but at reduced hours,” Town Manager Steven Harrell said. “Those hours have not yet been fully determined at this time but no the library is not closing.”

Hardison hopes to see a change soon.

“We are in kind of a tight spot,” Hardison said. “We know that change has to happen but we want it to be fixed and we want to have a budget that works and serves the community in the best way possible.”

The new budget from the Local Government Commission goes into effect July 1. Harrell said revenue is very poor and in order to provide essential services, the LGC had to make some cuts. The town is working closely with the commission and state auditor to improve finances.

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