D-M Library here will close its doors June 14 for the remainder of fiscal year 2013.
Base leadership decided to close the base library due to fiscal challenges.
“As we continue to face these challenges, we are forced to make tough decisions with regard to where our valued dollars are invested,” said Lt. Col. Donald Bohney, 355th Fighter Wing director of staff, in an email to D-M personnel. “Recently, we took significant cuts in appropriated fund dollars that support personnel programs. Although, we were able to save most of those programs, we no longer have the funding to support the library contract.”
Bohney went on to remind members of the D-M community that the larger Tucson community has several library facilities, within 10 to 15 minutes of the base, which could possibly fulfill the needs that the base library once supplied.
Although the library will be closing, some materials and services will still be available through the Lending Library in the Education and Training section. Graduate Management Admission Test and Graduate Record Examination study materials will be available through the Lending Library, located in the Kennedy Professional Development Center room 120. It is scheduled to be available June 17. Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support and College Level Examination Program study materials will be available through the Pima Community College office here.
“Pima actually stepped up to the plate,” said Marie Lankford, 355th Force Support Squadron Force Development Flight chief. “They are the ones that manage the national test center here, where you do your DANTES and CLEP tests. They took it upon themselves to take the study materials and lend them to the students who will be taking the tests.”
Additionally, leadership is looking at options to provide an information learning center to give access to the Air Force Library online, through the Air Force Portal, since many books are now available online.
In his email, Bohney also reminded personnel that many programs are accessible at home. These include educational tools such as Overdrive Digital Media, Zinio Digital Magazines, the Universal Class program and many more.
Any books and other items borrowed from the D-M Library should be returned as soon as possible, but no later than June 14.
“This was not an easy decision for our leadership to make,” Lankford said. “We had to cut something, and we have to take care of the mission first.”
Though the closure does create an inconvenience, base leadership does anticipate better times.
“We recognize that the library is a valuable resource for our Airmen and look forward to reopening the library at a time in the future when we are less fiscally constrained,” Bohney said.