REPRIEVE: Sue McKerracher (front left) and Judy Brooker from the Australian Library and Information Association with supporters and staff Matthew Hanlon, Corena Wynd, Pam Crummy, Esabel Henry, Lesley Burgoyne and Peter Harris at the Goonellabah Library.
REPRIEVE: Sue McKerracher (front left) and Judy Brooker from the Australian Library and Information Association with supporters and staff Matthew Hanlon, Corena Wynd, Pam Crummy, Esabel Henry, Lesley Burgoyne and Peter Harris at the Goonellabah Library. Andy Parks

Goonellabah library saved

AN impassioned plea for councillors to consider their legacy from the executive director of the Australian Library and Information Association and a petition with almost 1000 signatures calling for the Goonellabah library to be kept open seem to have hit the mark.

Sue McKerracher from the library association addressed Lismore council last night and told them they were there to make a positive difference to the community.

"If Goonellabah Library closes you will have failed.

"You will be remembered not as visionaries and builders, but the men and women who took away a much-loved and valuable community asset."

After a huge outpouring of community sentiment to find another way of making budget savings, Lismore Council did just that and had two options on the table, both recommending the library be kept open with reduced hours and both options finding savings of over $100,000.

Goonellabah Library will be open five days a week (closed Wednesday and Sunday and each day from 12.30-1.30pm).

The other contentious library issue was the pos- sible closure of Lismore Library on Sundays, but under Option B adopted by the council, it will now remain open on Sundays and have slightly reduced hours on Thursday and Friday.

The other savings will be through the loss of a library assistant for 21 hours per week, savings in security costs, plus a redistribution of money held in library reserves and savings in other "underspent" allocations.

Cr Isaac Smith, who put forward a motion at the last council meeting to find the savings elsewhere, said it was "a monumental shift in council meeting the community's needs".

"Council's core business is more than just roads and rubbish. There are cultural and environmental aspects that need to be addressed."



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