No increase in budget could result in fewer employees and reduced hours at the Rhinelander District Library.
The government partners voted no to a $40,000 increase during an arbitration hearing this week. If the towns of Newbold, Pine Lake, Crescent, and Pelican, along with the city of Rhinelander object to a proposed budget, they can ask for a hearing. . The government partners voted against the increase. Oneida County also helps with funding. Hughes says the library's budget is close to $900,000.
Library Director Ed Hughes says an error last year concerning offering health insurance to employees resulted in an overage which he hoped to make up...
"...we'll have to find the money someplace else. Right now I'm thinking that we have two unfilled positions, one is full-time another part-time, We probably won't fill those..."
Hughes says it could result in fewer hours open..
"....I'm thinking now we will have to reduce...but that's still up in the air, that's not really not my decision, that's a board decision, but it would appear to me right now that we will make some cuts in hours..."
Hughes says Rhinelander's circulation rose by just over one percent last year but libraries comparable to Rhinelander's size have seen circulation drops.