Wait list for SD&G library internet loan

SD&G Library Director Karen Franklin and CFO Vanessa Metcalfe present the library budget to county council Monday, Dec. 4, 2017. Franklin says the mobile hotspot loan program is a "success story" which is already generating a wait list to borrow the internet at SD&G library branches. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

SD&G – Less than a year into a pilot project, a service to allow SD&G residents to borrow the internet is already generating a wait list.

During Monday’s county budget meeting, Director of Library Services, Karen Franklin, said there have been 130 circulations of the hotspots and there are roughly 65 people on a wait list at any given time.

Franklin described the program as a “success story.”

The county bought 15 mobile hotspot units earlier this year for $5,000 and made them available in July. It’s part of a three year pilot.

The service has cost the county around $2,900 in data usage to date, according to the department’s budget.

Coun. Tammy Hart asked if the library would be looking at a fee for the service. “(That’s) something you can look at,” she said.

The service was provided to allow people who don’t have the means to have the internet available to them, Franklin answered.

“(We) can’t be giving everything for free…(that’s the) problem I have with the library,” Hart concluded.

The county’s library budget for 2018 will be roughly $2.3 million – about $73,000 more than in 2017.

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