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Elkhart, Goshen Public Libraries now sharing resources

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The libraries in Elkhart and Goshen are joining forces.

They've merged their circulation systems and online catalogs meaning people who use the libraries now have access to a larger selection of books and other materials.

In Elkhart there's the main library downtown and four other branches but now Goshen is included.

The directors of the libraries say this will make things more convenient for people without raising taxes.

A declining budget year after year has hit the Elkhart Public Library hard.

So, they had to come up with a creative way to continue to provide more books and other materials to people and the director says a consortium with Goshen is one way.

Lisa Guedea Carreno is the Elkhart Public Library Director and she says, "Not only does this add convenience but it also adds hundreds of thousands of items now that are accessible to Elkhart's users from Goshen's collection."

A person with a library card can now search for books and other things between the two library systems.

If you see something you like you can pick it up at any branch.

Or, you can put it on hold and have it delivered to the location closest to you.

This includes CD's and movies but they're still working on being able to share e-books.

Plus, the merger makes it easier for people to have access to the Internet.

Guedea Carreno says, "This now enables a Goshen Public Library person to come with their library card and get on the computer and not have to go and get a special pass."

The director says another perk is that people can take advantage of different programs the other library may be offering.

Jason Borgaard and his wife use the library often.

He hadn't heard about Elkhart's merger with Goshen but he thinks it's a great idea.

He says, "I live here in Elkhart and I work in Goshen. So, it would be really convenient to stop there and pick up materials or have them sent from there to here."

The Elkhart library director believes this could help libraries financially.

For instance, if there is a popular book the library might be able to get by with ordering 10 books instead of 20 knowing that Goshen will have some.

There will be a public meeting to talk more about these recent changes.

It's Tuesday at 10:30 in the morning at the Dunlap library branch.

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