Today as 32 libraries reopen across the Auckland Libraries network Remuera Library is not amongst them. The Library ‘may’ open after Queens Birthday – no date has been confirmed. St Heliers Library is the library in the Orakei Local Board (OLB) area that has been chosen for reopening.
The decision to open certain libraries under Level 2 and not others was based on a number of factors, including a preference for larger sites, which enables more customers to be on site, proximity to another library, access to public transport and, staff availability.
The redeployment of library staff during lockdown, and the fact that some staff are in the vulnerable category, means there is insufficient staff to open all libraries at this time. Most of the Remuera staff will be working at St Heliers this week, and another at Epsom.
The intention of Council staff has been to ensure that there will be at least one library open in each of the 21 local board areas throughout Auckland from this week, and this will increase after Queen’s Birthday weekend.
When it was realised there would be no libraries reopening in our local area the decision has been made to reopen Epsom Library, not Remuera.
We are disappointed that Remuera has not been seen as a priority in the reopening strategy and are also disappointed on behalf of our struggling local businesses who will not benefit from the foot-traffic that the library brings.
Remuera Library is at the heart of our community and a highly valued public asset. As the Council faces an increasing financial crisis we do not want to see our library fall foul of fiscal expediency.
STOP PRESS: Our local OLB members are focussed on getting the Remuera Library reopened indicating that “a huge political push” is necessary and “they should be reopening the library as a matter of course, but that does not seem to be happening”.
You can express your concern to:
Mayor Phil Goff – Phil.Goff@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Orakei Councillor Desley Simpson – Desley.Simpson@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Orakei Local Board Chair Scott Milne – email@example.com
or our three Remuera local board members
Troy Churton – Troy.Churton@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
David Wong – firstname.lastname@example.org
Margaret Voyce – email@example.com