Claremont Colleges cut Honnold Mudd budget by more than 20 percent

Honnold Mudd Library and grass in front of it
Honnold Mudd library is the latest to face COVID-19 related budget cuts by the Claremont Colleges (Mabel Lui • The Student Life)

In a series of COVID-19 budget cuts, the Claremont Colleges have reduced Honnold Mudd Library’s budget by 23.5 percent, according to an email sent to faculty and obtained by TSL.

The budget reduction was in response to “current and anticipated revenue shortfalls” at the 5Cs, according to the email sent by library administration. The materials budget — which covers the library’s subscriptions, periodicals, e-journals and e-book packages — was reduced by 19 percent, or about $894,000, the email said.

The library canceled 71 e-resource subscriptions and 143 print subscriptions Sept. 31, or a total of 214 cancellations and 19 percent of the library’s previous 1,123 subscription titles. The terminated subscriptions will save the library a projected $151,000, according to the email.

Depending on the subscription, cancellations will take effect between now and June. Most publications will prevent full access on Dec. 31, though 84 percent of canceled titles will be accessible through the library in some format, either in past or current issues.

According to the email, the library moved to reduce costs when budget reductions were announced in August. The canceled titles were those that would have “the least degree of impact” on student and faculty research, teaching and learning.

The library mostly canceled print subscriptions, citing the library’s closure to the public and that “no one will be able to use the print periodicals for the foreseeable future.” 

E-resource cancellations were decided on the basis of “low usage” and “more affordable” options, like pay-per-view. E-resources that cost the library over $15 per use also met criteria for cancellation, according to the email. 

Library administration and staff said they were not able to “solicit extensive faculty input” while undergoing subscription terminations, citing the “extent of the budget reductions and the need to expedite decisions in time to meet subscription cancelation deadlines.” 

The library is accepting faculty feedback via Google Form, which says the library “cannot currently make any guarantees” about re-subscriptions.

“Our ability to re-subscribe is contingent upon the library getting some or all of our budget reinstated,” the form reads. 

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