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franklin county times

Red Bay to enjoy longer hours at Weatherford Library

For all the library-lovers in Red Bay, a recent move by the Red Bay City Council will mean even greater accessibility to everything the Weatherford Public Library has to offer.

The council voted last week to expand operating hours for the library, 307 4th Ave. S., from 25 hours per week to 35. The change offers multiple benefits, including bringing head librarian Linda Ezzell’s salary in line with city policies.

“Our library employee works 25 hours per week and was ‘grandfathered’ in during a prior administration and receives full-time benefits. There is no classification in the City of Red Bay’s Employee Handbook to justify the hours and benefits of this position,” Mayor Charlene Fancher explained. Working 35 hours per week meets the city’s minimum 29.5 hours required to be considered full-time.

With the expanded hours, citizens of Red Bay will be able to take advantage of increased opportunities to check out books and use the library’s Wi-Fi.

“Let’s open up the doors of our library to people who want to be there and utilize its services. It’s a win-win,” Fancher said.

Ezzell said she is hopeful the change will increase the community’s participation at the library.

“We’re hoping it’s going to increase traffic being open more hours. We might reach some people who haven’t been able to come at certain hours,” she said. “If you reach more people, your circulation is going to increase … We offer so much here, great items in circulation, public computers and Wi-fi – the resources are here for the people if they will just visit the library.”

The library is presently open 1-5 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday and noon to 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday. Ezzell said the library board would be voting on how those hours would be split across the week at the board meeting yesterday, which information was not available prior to press time.