It won't be long until county commissions and city councils begin preparing their budgets for the upcoming fiscal year. Already, some organizations and agencies have put in requests for specific funding amounts.
This week, executive directors of the Philippi and Belington public libraries asked the Barbour County Commission for $2,000 each - the same amount they were given in years past. They said it would be much appreciated, though, if a little more could come their way.
Both libraries, like others throughout West Virginia, must provide matching funds for grant monies they receive from the state. Unless the two Barbour County libraries get $4,100 by June 20, they will lose the state funding for next year. While some money has been raised, the libraries are currently about $2,500 short.
When Philippi's Judy Larry and Belington's Tammy Smith made their plea to the County Commission, they spoke from experience. The libraries have struggled for funding, and in the past couple of years Larry and Smith have expressed concerns about how a lack of money would effect the organizations' futures.
This situation only tells the story for the two Barbour County libraries. Others in our area may be facing similar worries. Larry and Smith said they recently met state legislators and were told libraries aren't going to receive extra funding.
All of our area libraries are more than just a place to pick up a good book. They offer computer classes, summer programs for children and genealogy databases, among other services with great value to communities.
It is our hope that the libraries are able to receive the monies they need and continue to thrive.