|Book checkouts up despite Monday closures at library
When a public library’s open six days a week, then forced to cut hours back to five days a week, you could rightfully assume the number of books checked out would diminish also.
The Sonoma County Library Commission ordered libraries to close every Monday in August 2011, and eight hours of book checkout (or return) availability were lost.
But not at the Rohnert Park-Cotati Public library branch. In 2010, a six days a week schedule, 1,237 books were checked out. In 2011, despite the loss of five Mondays, 1,514 were checked out and the figure remained about the same in 2012 with 1,467 books checked out. In other words, the library was busier with a five-day schedule than the former six days a week routine. Just ask any library staffer or volunteer.
This bit of news came out at a meeting of the Library Advisory Board Tuesday Feb. 19, from library branch manager Nancy Kleban. She didn’t provide any reason for this upsurge in library use, indicating only the Monday closures countywide drew further attention from citizens. The same increases also applied to books ordered and put on hold until they were picked up.
The advisory board also approved more meetings to be held, semi-monthly instead of quarterly. The next meeting will be April 16. Elections for new board members will be held in August and the board anticipates two seats will be open for appointment.
They also discussed plans for the two Open Houses to be held in the library, Wednesday, March 20, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. and Saturday March 23 from 1 to 3:30 p.m.
A minor correction: the Wednesday March 20 event to be held 7 to 8 p.m. in connection with “Big Read,” celebrating the poetry of Emily Dickinson, applies to a radio program on KRCB-FM, not the library.