The Perth County Information Network (PCIN), which connects public library users and library materials county wide, will continue to operate in spite of cuts to the Ontario Library Service budget. On Thursday, April 18th, 2019, the Southern Ontario Library Service (SOLS) announced that it would cease operation of the provincial InterLibrary Loan delivery service. This announcement is in the wake of a 50% funding cut to the agency in the recent Ontario Budget. InterLibrary Loan (ILLO) is the service that allows library customers to request and borrow items from other libraries. While used for various purposes, the system is used by many students, book clubs, authors, and academics in the area. “InterLibrary Loan provides equalized access to materials, especially for those who are members of rural libraries with smaller collections.” says Kendra Roth, Management Chair of PCIN and CEO of Perth East Public Library. While the ILLO service itself has not been discontinued by SOLS, it has been suspended to determine how the physical movement of items might be accomplished moving forward. The SOLS delivery service also functioned as the backbone of the Perth County Information Network’s resource-sharing mandate. In 2018, over 72,500 items were shared between PCIN libraries using this service. Perth County libraries are committed to continuing to share resources among its member libraries, and are dedicated to finding a solution to replace the previously provincially-funded delivery service. Customers will experience a delay in receiving their requested materials during this transition period. Within the Perth County Information Network, a library card provides free access to the collections of North Perth Public Library, Perth East Public Library, Stratford Public Library, St. Marys Public Library, and West Perth Public Library. PCIN has long-standing reciprocal relationships that also enable customers to get a free library card from and borrow directly from Wellington County Library, Middlesex County Library, the Region of Waterloo Library, Oxford County Library, and Huron County Library.
If you would like more information about this topic, please contact your local PCIN member library:
• North Perth Public Library: Rebecca Dechert-Sage, CEO 519-291-4621 / email@example.com
• Perth East Public Library: Kendra Roth, CEO 519-595-8395 / firstname.lastname@example.org
• St. Marys Public Library: Matthew Corbett, CEO 519-284-3346 / email@example.com
• Stratford Public Library: Wendy Hicks, Deputy Director 519-271-0220 x111 / firstname.lastname@example.org
• West Perth Public Library: Caroline Shewburg 519-348-9234 / email@example.com