Skip to main content

After cutting $3 million from the library budget, DeKalb County commissioners are shocked -- shocked I tell ya! -- that neighborhood branches have to close.

On March 1, the DeKalb (GA) County Board of Commissioners rejected a tax hike and voted to cut $33.6 million from this year’s budget, including $3 million (22 percent) from the Public Library system. After learning from an article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the neighborhood branch would close, the commissioners got all upset. They had no idea that slashing the budget would result in closing some branches and limiting hours at others.

Sekondi Landry, age 12 and a daily user of the facilities, started a petition to keep Scott Candler Library open. Landry, who was born with one arm, said he wanted to be like his "granddaddy," who grew up marching for civil rights.

Interim County Library Director Alison Weissinger said there is no option: on April 1, the library on McAfee Road will close and many of the other 22 county branches will see reductions in hours.

We have to move forward. Unless they give us more money,
I don’t know what else we can do.

The books and materials budget, which was $2.4 million in 2008, has been cut to $100,000 this year.

* Because of the cuts, the library system lost 50 staff positions (down to 240).

* Because of the cuts, no new books will be purchased.

* Because of the cuts, many newspaper and magazine subscriptions will be canceled.

* Because of the cuts, hours will be reduced at many branches, including cutting Sunday hours at the Wesley Chapel, Chamblee and Tucker branches. Four other smaller libraries -- Brookhaven, Embry Hills, Gresham and Lithonia-Davidson -- will now be closed on Fridays and Saturdays.

The commissioners are really upset. They don't think this branch should be closed.

“The budget committee did not recommend closing the [Candler] library and I think it’s a mistake,” Commissioner Larry Johnson said. “This is a high unemployment area and this is a resource for them to try and find some employment. If you want to close for 10 months, what are these folks going to do?”

Gosh, maybe the commissioners should have thought about these folks before slashing "unnecessary" items from the county budget.

But the Teabaggers were very proud of this victory in DeKalb, as noted by AJC conservative columnist, Kyle Wingnut Wingfield:

Taxpayers are a larger voting bloc, but before the tea party they were an amorphous — and therefore voiceless — group. Now that they are organized, they are electing people like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker who are willing to side with taxpayers over the unions — and people like the commissioners in Georgia’s DeKalb County who this week voted for layoffs rather than higher taxes.

It's not just the libraries; it's the courts, tax collections, schools, police academy. And each time, the commissioners have reacted with surprise and chagrin that cuts in services are being made -- "We didn't mean for this to happen!"

I hope the backlash against the Tea Party is swift and fatal.

Originally posted to sboucher on Thu Mar 17, 2011 at 08:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Kos Georgia and Progressive Friends of the Library Newsletter.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Angie in WA State, Trix, AggieDemocrat, MadRuth, Geenius at Wrok, gaspare, saraswati, madmsf, am, Emerson, karlpk, littlesky, Fishgrease, Sherri in TX, donna in evanston, tacet, hyperstation, eeff, WI Deadhead, hubcap, Scott in NAZ, Gustogirl, jackspace, missLotus, BlackSheep1, mkfarkus, mrblifil, Rujax206, Toktora, bwren, jalbert, Iberian, wader, Texknight, RLF, Getreal1246, Nag, Dr Colossus, figbash, draghnfly, Virago, JDPITALIA, Steven Payne, houyhnhnm, liberte, Timbuk3, Eddie Haskell, Lilith, zerelda, Sembtex, mungley, poemworld, Black Max, Pam LaPier, vacantlook, Armand451, Frank Vyan Walton, sawgrass727, Jersey Joe, davidkc, Julie Gulden, maybeeso in michigan, historys mysteries, marina, radarlady, Tinfoil Hat, NoMoreLies, DianeNYS, Unit Zero, vinylgirl, Tonedevil, chimene, PBen, Philoguy, panicbean, blindcynic, dewtx, YucatanMan, Kevskos, Gary Norton, eru, majcmb1, Sun Tzu, jimstaro, McMeier, SheriffBart, markdd, SBandini, Shotput8, coolbreeze, deepsouthdoug, Pluto, bunsk, Ekaterin, Alan Arizona, Snud, bently, begone, alrdouglas, Nance, trashablanca, BachFan, myboo, Clytemnestra, Junkyard Dem, BlueInARedState, HoundDog, Prognosticator, ruleoflaw, dougymi, Magnifico, luckydog, Alexandra Lynch, MJ via Chicago, global citizen, nonnie9999, JVolvo, happy camper, MarciaJ720, myrealname, MrJersey, fiddlingnero, zedaker, Statusquomustgo, crystal eyes, FrankieB, Bernie68, One Pissed Off Liberal, old wobbly, dmh44, tgypsy, Dartagnan, gailwax, LillithMc, jeanette0605, DWG, sfbob, truckystiv, DennisMorrison, davehouck, bnasley, millwood, Bridge Master, hopi13, rogereaton, GeorgeXVIII, spearfish, vet, Thoughtful David, VA Breeze, pidge not midge, hkorens, mconvente, gimmeshelter, JeffW, kingneil, Youffraita, Involuntary Exile, NewDealer, elwior, filby, KJG52, mikeconwell, royce, Dancing Frog, hwmnbn, Jeff Y, brasilaaron, Seamus D, S C B, MarkVA71, poohsmom, Karl Rover, adobedragon, allie123, Executive Odor, Nica24, sagansong, marketgeek, fromma, magicsister, HoosierDeb, shortgirl, lissablack, statsone, fidel, greywolfe359, enemy of the people, Bule Betawi, McGahee220, DontTaseMeBro, rsmpdx, litoralis, Nebraskablue, FinchJ, Partisan Progressive, h bridges, jennylind, EquationDoc, DefendOurConstitution, followyourbliss, Mylies Voice, MKSinSA, sricki, IreGyre, Ibis Exilis, JDog42, deviant24x, collardgreens, Words In Action, commonmass, brentbent, coppercelt, p gorden lippy, Vacationland, NJpeach, jethrock, piers, secret38b, klompendanser, Polly Syllabic, alguien, freeport beach PA, Eddie L, ctlrick, sullivanst, SoCalHobbit, DailyDrew, roystah, DrTerwilliker, ericlewis0, Otteray Scribe, Floande, science nerd, upaithric, CornSyrupAwareness, redlum jak, Front Toward Enemy, MidwestTreeHugger, ChicagoMom60660, bgblcklab1, winter outhouse, nicethugbert, Quackerz, thebluecrayon, MaryinHammondsport, vahana, FarWestGirl, OhioNatureMom, misskitty64, sallym, marleycat, zukesgirl64, grannysally, thomask, KVoimakas, rk2, CherryTheTart, Sark Svemes, whoknu, corvaire, VTCC73, hpchicago, the tmax, Marihilda, Mets102, Democrats Ramshield, daveusf, SteelerGrrl, rscopes, Ranger1, googie, too young to give up, RhodaA, OHknighty, Siri, The Lone Apple, oldcrow, AnnieR, AreDeutz, Trotskyrepublican, IdeaTipper, martinjedlicka, Lorinda Pike, chicagobleu, TexDemAtty, teabaggerssuckbalz, supercereal, MartyM, ClutchCargo, pittie70, ricklewsive, wxorknot, dotdash2u, BreadGod, spiffy

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site