FOR and AGAINST
Votes speak louder than words.
City councillors had their first real chance to defend our public library during the 2012 budget vote. Here’s how they voted on the Ford Administration’s plan to cut 10% from the Toronto Public Library budget:
AGAINST the Ford cut
FOR the Ford cut
Glenn De Baeremaeker
Gloria Lindsay Luby
Mike Del Grande
Frank Di Giorgio
Frances Nunziata (Chair)
James Pasternak (declared conflict of interest)
* Member of the Toronto Public Library Board
As the chair of the Toronto Public Library Board, Councillor Paul Ainslie is supposed to protect our public library, making his decision to support Mayor Ford’s damaging cuts startling.
Even though Ford’s 10% cut was rejected, taking about $7 million from the chopping block, Council still voted to reduce the TPL’s budget by almost 6% in 2012. As a result, services were cut, fewer books added to the collection and measures taken that discourage use of this great learning and knowledge institution.
The quiet attack on our public library
“We’re going to be outsourcing everything that is not nailed down”
Doug Ford – Feb 6, 2011
In place of the Fords’ wrecking ball approach to our public library, which failed because Torontonians forcefully and explicitly rejected it, a longer-term strategy of undermining our public library is at work.
New fees, fines and acquisition cuts are having their intended affect. The latest information we have about usage rates shows fewer people are using our public library. Without a renewed commitment, these trends are likely to continue making our public library an easier target for future attacks.