Friday, June 11, 2010

Los Angeles Cuts Library Hours, Fires 101 Workers

Source: Job Searching Blog

First of all, why is this blog covering a reduction in library hours? Because it is a symptom of the crisis in local government finance. These are the same local governments make the land use decisions that determine our urban form, so it is worth trying to understand their problems.

So, the LA Times reports that LA City libraries will be reduced to five days per week and 101 workers will be laid off, an example of how when it comes to borrowing money to help the economy or balancing the budget with service cuts, Los Angeles has chosen to emphasize the latter. You can find out more about the city's latest budget controversy here.

And what do these 101 workers do now? What do the businesses that depend on their patronage do?

What do the parents who could send their children to these libraries do? Pay for extra child care? Spend more on transportation to find a more distant library?

Raising taxes isn't the only thing that can hurt economically. Service cuts hurt too. Often they hurt the people least able to absorb the damage.

Good luck to all the laid off workers.

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