A New Chapter for Community Access: Budget 2024-27 Expands Library Services

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Expanded library hours, more library materials, permanent library security, and a new library in Northwest Winnipeg are all on the books as part of the City of Winnipeg’s 2024-27 Multi-Year Balanced Budget.

These improvements underscore the city's commitment to providing information resources, community spaces, and accessible services for all Winnipeggers.

Key highlights of the investment in library services include:

  • A 12% increase to weekly library hours, including having all libraries open on Wednesdays year-round, and a 50% increase to Sunday hours during the fall/winter season to accommodate more visitors and provide flexible access. [Table of new hours is attached to this email]
  • A $462,500 increase in the budget for library materials, ensuring patrons have access to a diverse and updated collection of resources.
  • $134,500 for additional programming, including digital literacy, Indigenous languages, early literacy, and the ideaMill makerspace.
  • $1.8 million for security improvements across the library system to ensure a safe and welcoming environment for everyone.
  • $4.7 million toward the construction of a new library in Northwest Winnipeg, addressing the needs of a rapidly growing community.

These enhancements have been made possible in part through the support of the Province of Manitoba, which has increased its funding for library services, highlighting a shared commitment to enhancing public resources.

“Our government is proud to continue investing in our libraries across our province, which builds a strong foundation for our communities,” said the Honourable Glen Simard, Minister of Sport, Culture, Heritage and Tourism. “Libraries are cultural and educational hubs across our province, and we’re pleased to see these investments being used to expand hours and create more opportunities for Manitobans, especially in the City of Winnipeg.”

Mayor Scott Gillingham also shared his optimism regarding the impact of these investments: “Libraries are the heart of our communities, offering spaces where people can learn, explore, and connect. These enhancements will not only improve our library services but also enrich the lives of Winnipeggers in meaningful ways.”

Councillor Evan Duncan, Chair of Community Services, highlighted the importance of these improvements: “The expanded hours, new library in Northwest Winnipeg, and security enhancements are all crucial steps towards making our libraries more accessible and safer for everyone. We are committed to providing quality services that reflect the needs and expectations of our community.”

The public is invited to provide budget feedback through a new online survey or participate in the upcoming Standing Policy Committee meetings. For more information on the 2024-27 Multi-Year Balanced Budget and how to get involved in the budget consultation process, visit Winnipeg.ca/Budget2024.

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