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In contrast to the grim budget news facing many libraries, Jacksonville, FL, mayor John Peyton and the city council have authorized 142 new full-time positions in Jacksonville Public Library's 2003-04 budget, beginning October 1. The total budget will increase from $20.1 million in FY02/03 to $25.6 million in FY03/04.
The new positions will be used to staff six new library branches opening between May and October 2004, expand hours at three existing branches, add children's librarians at three branches, provide library assistants to help with computers, create the library's first seven custodial staff positions, and provide necessary administrative staff to operate a rapidly expanding library system.
The Better Jacksonville Plan, a capital improvement program funded by a sales tax increase passed in September 2000, will renovate or expand 12 existing branches and …