The “It’s About Time” campaign was created to give residents more time to access the important services our libraries provide to them.C.E.L.A. logo      
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Back in 2000, Fairfax County’s community libraries were open 59 hours a week. Regional libraries were open 65 hours a week.

Since then our population has grown, particularly the population of school-age children—while the library’s budget and hours have waned. Fairfax County libraries today are only open for an average of 56 hours. These cuts are unnoticeable to some, but have real and immediate impacts on many segments of our population, with far-reaching ramifications for our community and our future.

“It’s about time” to make more time for our libraries.

Our Goal
Achieve an FCPL budget Increase to expand library access, providing:

    • Seven-day service (Sunday hours) at all 22 full-service branches
    • Same hours at all branches
    • More books and materials

Access for All
With more than 400,000 cardholders, 273,728 event attendees and 4.6 million annual visits, Fairfax County residents, young and old, rely on the Library not only for books and literacy, but also for general education, career development, youth and adult programming, technology support, and many other services available in a safe, secure, and welcoming environment.

The lack of normalized hours and weekend access hurts all County citizens. Those with easy access to transportation, regular work hours, and free evenings and weekends can sometimes make alternative plans for Library visits.

But not all of our growing population has those fortunate advantages. Each day libraries are heavily relied upon by students who need reliable internet access to complete their homework; by people of all ages to help with their career searches and development; by seniors and other adults who volunteer, tutor and mentor, or continue their own lifelong learning goals. Commuters, working parents, single parents, and their children can only reach the library on weekends. Residents with lower and fixed incomes and those in need have limited options when it comes to using our libraries.

How much will it cost?

Providing seven-day service at all library branches, with consistent hours and a larger collection will cost $3.3 million more per year – keeping the library’s annual budget less than 1% of the County’s total general fund allocation.

Why now?
The FY2021 Advertised Budget will be released alongside the proposed Fairfax County Strategic Plan, and will be the first year the Budget is linked with the strategic plan. Making libraries accessible helps turn the Strategic Plan into reality.

What would the new hours be?
All full-service libraries would have the same standard service hours:

Sunday 10-6
Monday 10-9
Tuesday 10-9
Wednesday 10-9
Thursday 10-6
Friday 10-6
Saturday 10-6
TOTAL 65 hours

When will my library have Sunday hours?
The proposed plan would impact 11 libraries in FY2021 (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021). These libraries include all eight Regional libraries (which currently have Sunday hours), plus the three busiest Community libraries: Patrick Henry, Kings Park and Kingstowne).

A process will be established to decide which Community libraries get Sunday hours in FY2022 (beginning July 1, 2021). Factors in the decision-making process will include, but not be limited, to: usage levels, community need, and which libraries will be under renovation. The remaining libraries will get Sunday hours beginning July 2022.

When will my library get more books and materials?
All libraries will benefit from an increase in the collection, beginning in July 2020.

I live near a Regional library with Sunday hours. Why should I support this change?
Regional libraries benefit from an additional two hours per week during the valuable weekend hours, as well as from the overall increase in collections. In addition, the new, consistent schedule of library hours will make it easier to remember when the library is open, and provide even Regional users with additional options at branches in their area.

And all residents, no matter where they live in the County, will benefit from the fulfillment of Strategic Plan priorities (Cultural and Recreational Opportunities, Economic Opportunity, Education and Lifelong Learning, Efficient and Effective Government) – making Fairfax County a better place to live for all of us. This in turn helps to improve property values, attract more businesses to our area, and increases the amenities and services available to all our residents.

Understanding the Fairfax County Budget
Important Dates

These are dates that pertain to the It’s About Time campaign. For a detailed budget calendar click here.

February 25, 2020
County Executive presents FY 2021 Advertised (proposed) Budget Plan
February 26, 2020
7:00 p.m.

Mount Vernon District Budget Hearing
Gerry Hyland Government Center
8350 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria, VA 22309

February 27, 2020
7:00 p.m.
Dranesville District Budget Hearing (1 of 2)
McLean Community Center
1234 Ingleside Ave, McLean, VA 22101
March 4, 2020
7:00 p.m.
Sully District Budget Hearing
Sully District Office
4900 Stonecroft Blvd, Chantilly, VA 20151
March 7, 2020
1:30 p.m.
Lee District Budget Hearing
Franconia Governmental Center
6121 Franconia Road, Alexandria, VA 22310

March 10, 2020
Board of Supervisors authorizes proposed real estate tax rate for FY 2021.
March 11, 2020
7:30 p.m.
Braddock District Budget Hearing
Braddock District Office
9002 Burke Lake Rd, Burke, VA 22015
March 12, 2020
Mason District Budget Hearing
Mason District Office
6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
March 18, 2020
7:00 p.m
Dranesville District Budget Hearing (2 of 2)
Great Falls Library
9830 VA-193, Great Falls, VA 22066
March 19, 2020
7:00 p.m
Springfield District Budget Hearing
West Springfield Government Center
6140 Rolling Rd, West Springfield, VA 22152
March 21, 2020
Hunter Mill Budget Hearing
Council Chamber at Town Hall
127 Center Street S, Vienna, VA 22180

March 25, 2020
7:00 p.m.
Providence District Budget Hearing
Providence District Office
3001 Vaden Dr, Fairfax, VA 22031
March 30, 2020
Hunter Mill Budget Hearing
Dogwood Elementary School
2300 Glade Drive, Reston, VA 20191

April 9, 2020
11:30 - 1:30
on Crowdcast
NEW: Lee District Budget Hearing
Sign up on Crowdcast or submit questions in advance
by emailing
April 16, 2020
7:00 p.m.
UPDATE: Providence District Budget Hearing
Now a online forum simulcast on Channel 16 and Facebook Live
NOW April 28-30, 2020
Board of Supervisors holds public hearings on budget
NOW May 5, 2020
Board of Supervisors FY 2021 Budget markup; determines budget and tax rate
NOW May 12, 2020
Board of Supervisors adopts FY 2021 Budget, tax rate and transfer amount to FCPS

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