LEETONIA- The Leetonia Community Public Library is adding Friday hours beginning Oct. 1.
The library board this week approved the addition of Friday hours on a trial basis. Wednesday and Saturday hours will be adjusted to accommodate the change due to continued budget constraints that prevent full operating hours each day, according to Library Director Lisa Rohrbaugh.
The new hours will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday hours will remain 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The library is closed on Sunday.
"I'm really happy that we can try this," Rohrbaugh said. "We're here to serve the public and we need to be open as much as we can as many days as we can so people can use this facility. Even part of the day is better than nothing."
Rohrbaugh said the library offers after-hour lockers where patrons can pick up requested items when the library is closed.
Despite the desire for more hours, Rohrbaugh said the library is still restricted by budget cuts, noting a 5 percent decrease in state funding for this year. Since the library opened in 2009, the local government funding (the library's main source of funding) has decreased by approximately12 percent, according to Fiscal Officer Randy Chismar.
But the board still agreed to open the doors on Friday for the first time since hours were cut in 2009.
"Little by little we're bringing them back," Rohrbaugh said.
The board elected to trim Wednesday evening hours, but left it open long enough for students to stop in after school, she added.
According to board President Charlene Hall, community members have been asking for Friday hours.
"What we're trying to do is make the library more accessible," she said. "The public made it known that they want the library open on Fridays."
In addition to the new hours, Rohrbaugh said the library has also updated its computer system to make searches easier. The program is funded by an anonymous donor. She said she also anticipates being able to offer eBooks by Christmas.
Kevin Howell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org