Library usage goes up as economy goes down

By Lakecia Shockley - bio - email

Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

EAST TEXAS (KLTV) - They are known for being quiet, and these days, it is a little tougher because libraries are getting to be a lot busier.

"We've noticed since last fall when the economic times made a real impact that attendance has increased and we've seen a lot more people use the computer," said Kara Spitz who manages the Longview Library.

She said that since last year, Longview has added an additional one thousand new card carrying members. She said the economy is the reason.

"When times are hard people utilize the free resources," said Spitz. "Everything we have is free. We offer computer classes, we offer job searching skills, we have dvds, best sellers."

Tye Jones is one East Texan who is taking advantage of what the library has to offer.

"I just got my library card and then I noticed, 'Hey, DVDs'," exclaimed Jones. "I got a DVD player. I might as well rent one for 7 days for free."

From DVDs to books on CDs, East Texas families like the Bagley Bunch are saving money thanks to the library.

"We like to get out of the house with four small children under seven," said Kim Bagley who has four children under 7. "Instead of going to the store and buying books and putting it into our own home library we come here."

Michelle Greenalch home schools her son James and daughter Ashley. She says in these harsh economic times the public library is the place to be.

"Different books to pick from, different resources and programs that they have for the kids, story times and things like that, that you can take advantage of," said Michelle Greenalch.

They are helping East Texans stretch their dollar. The City of Tyler told us their library usage has gone through the roof as well. They have 23 percent more this quarter, than this same time last year.