Budget cuts an added hardship on job seekers - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Budget cuts an added hardship on job seekers

By Lori Brown - bio | email | Follow us on Twitter

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - The budget cuts Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton proposed to the Memphis City Council in a letter Tuesday would mean closing libraries, an added hardship on people searching for jobs during the recession.

Latoya Williams says closing her neighborhood library would mean closing off her opportunities to find a job in this tough economy.

"Basically every job, it requires now that you go on the internet to fill out an application instead of in person," she said.

Williams doesn't have internet access in her home.  While she would still be able to go to the Central Library to jump online, she says the wait for computers there is far too long.

Even at the Highland Library, every working computer is in use.

"You have a lot of people in the city that use the library to come every day to look for jobs," she said.

You also have people like Joan Cox, who credits the Highland Library for her love of books.

"I've been coming to this library since I was a child," she said.

Cox hopes Memphis' next generation of readers won't be robbed of the opportunities she had.

"It serves a lot of purposes to make Memphis a better city," she said.

Mayor Herenton's proposal to close the book on several public libraries is upsetting a lot of people, which may be the reaction he is seeking.  In a letter to the Memphis City Council delivered Tuesday, Herenton said was the Council's request to identify $50 million in budget reductions that would make the extreme measures necessary.    

"I do not support any reduction in the original operating budget request I submitted to the City Council on April 21, 2009," Herenton wrote.

Stay with Action News 5 for updates on this story.

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