News & Announcements

Posted on: February 15, 2017

Hinton Municipal Library Concerns

During the February 14, 2017, Hinton Town Council Standing Committee Meeting, Mayor Rob Mackin spoke to discussion circulating in the community surrounding the Hinton Municipal Library funding decision included in Budget 2017.

The following represents Mayor Mackin's comments, which will also be viewable in Town of Hinton Council Recordings, to be posted in the coming days here.

First of all, I want to alleviate the concerns in the community about the Coal Branch Archives closing.

The Coal Branch Archives are the community’s. Through generous donations of dollars and time, Hinton should be proud of this incredible resource; What is more, under this Council, the Archives will not be closing. The Town is the custodian of this historical record of our past, and we all understand the importance of retaining our history.

It is very unfortunate that a message contrary to this has been spread across not only the community, but across the entire province, and beyond.  

When Council had proposed the 4% (or ~$19,000) reduction in the Hinton Municipal Library 2017 Appropriation request, it was following considerable discussion and deliberation.

All of Hinton can, and should, be proud to have a library such as ours.

The Hinton Municipal Library is the 2nd highest funded library per capita amongst those communities with a population between 5,000 and 50,000 residents. Even with the proposed allocation of $475,000 for 2017, the Hinton Municipal Library will continue to be in the top funded libraries in the entire province.

It is also important for the community to note that the $475,000 allocation to the Library is not the whole amount. Each year an additional $85-90,000 is provided by the Town to cover the costs of utilities, custodial services and other facilities costs. And then, on top of all that, the Town provides support services (IT, Finance, Communications, HR, etc), plus provides the Library space for no rental cost.  

To summarize, the Coal Branch Archives are Hinton’s. They will not be closing.

The Hinton Municipal Library is one of the highest funded libraries in the province and it will continue to be – even with the $475,000 appropriation that Council is proposing to provide to the Library for 2017.

We understand the feelings and emotions around this, however I want to ensure that all the facts are presented so our residents understand the contemplation and considerations made around this decision.

You can find out more on the Municipal Affairs website; this link will present the top 30 appropriations per capita recorded in 2014.


Engage with Budget 2017

Budget 2017 is available for viewing online at http://www.hinton.ca/budget. It contains contextual information and updates by department. The document represents an opportunity to inform citizens on municipal spending, and also celebrates achievements of the previous year while setting goals for the next.

A number of venues are still available for residents to share their feedback.

  • Coffee with Council – before every Hinton Town Council meeting, residents have the opportunity to speak to their Councillors. Councillors are available from 3:30 – 4:00 PM.
  • Hinton Listens – At any time, and on any subject pertaining to Hinton, Hintonites can share feedback, compliments, requests, and more through the Hinton Listens tool, available at http://www.hinton.ca/322/Hinton-Listens
  • Citizen Budget Tool - The Town of Hinton is launching the use of an educational budget simulator to encourage citizen feedback on the 2017 budget. Question topics were chosen based on the results of the Ipsos Citizen Satisfaction Survey which was completed fall 2016. Questions were designed to identify key themes related to community priorities on projects, services and programming and will assist in informed decision making by Hinton Town Council. Results from the budget consultation process will be reviewed and may be referenced in future budget cycles. The simulator will be available at http://hinton.citizenbudget.com/

As per consensus by Council, the Budget will return for decision during the Regular Council Meeting of February 21, 2017.


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