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Posted: Sunday, January 26th 2014 at 7:20am

Library board to get budget proposal for possible reopening of E. Hall branch

By Ken Stanford Staff
EMAIL STORY CONTACT EDITOR PRINT
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Mixson says his proposal calls for moving the library system's tech and computer services division, above, to the East Hall site.
GAINESVILLE - The Hall County Library Board is expected to receive a budget proposal for reopening the East Hall branch when it meets Tuesday night.

This comes a month after talk surfaced among some county officials about possibly turning the building into a clinic for county employees. The library branch was closed several years ago when the county was grappling with a budget deficit brought on by the recession.

"At our last board meeting I discussed how we could use the East Hall library building," library system director Adrian Mixson said. "By moving our entire Technical Services and Processing staff to the building we could turn the meeting room into a computer lab for the public and use the computer and processing staff to keep the lab open while doing their 'back room' work."

Mixson said it would take 8-10 months to make the move since the staff work areas in Gainesville would need to be taken over there (to the East Hall site) "piece–by-piece using our existing staff and not disrupt service."

He added Friends of the Hall County Library has some money from a recent gift to purchase lab equipment and furnishings for the public to use.

"The (library) board requested I present an East hall operating budget and show them how we could use the space. Any increase in operating cost would be in utilities and my utility estimate is based on when we last utilized the building as a library."

If that move is made, Mixson said the next project would be to turn the space in Gainesville that would be "freed-up" into larger quarters for the children’s program.

"If you have been in the Gainesville building when we have kids programs, you know we sometimes (we) have 250 show up. Until we can find the funding for the Gainesville workroom, we will use it like it was originally intended or for circulation work space and storage."

Mixson said despite the reduced hours, another fallout from the county's recent budget crunch, "we still have 450,000 uses in our buildings in a year."

Tuesday's library board meeting will begin at 6:00 at the headquarters branch in downtown Gainesville.
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