Budget Vote & Trustee Election May 17

Budget Vote & Trustee Election May 17

March 15, 2016 | Library News

Albany city residents go to the polls Tuesday, May 17, to vote on the Albany Public Library tax levy and choose three new members for the library Board of Trustees. The 2017 budget plan was approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees at its March 8 meeting.

The proposed 2017 operating tax levy of $6,652,455 reflects a 1.0 percent increase in the annual total tax levy. If approved by voters in May, this increase would mean that the owner of a $150,000 home would pay approximately $2.30 more in library taxes next year.

“We have worked hard to become a lean and efficient organization that lives within its means. The library leadership and trustees recognize the tax burden faced by Albany residents, and devised a budget that continues to deliver quality library services to the public without making a large impact on taxpayers,” said Scott Jarzombek, the library’s executive director. “Each year, we get asked to provide more and more resources and services to the community. This very modest budget increase would allow the library to meet that challenge.”

The proposed budget will support the increased operating costs required to run seven neighborhood branches.  The library provides: free access to a large and diverse collection of books, DVDs, music CDs, audiobooks, as well as eBooks, eMagazines, and other digital materials; free public computer and digital device use, Wi-Fi access, and mobile app; free public programs including children’s story times, computer classes, financial literacy workshops, music performances, book reviews, and lectures; free access to professional reference librarians who provide assistance with information and research needs; and free use of community meeting rooms and study spaces.

The library is hosting several information sessions about the budget and trustee election:

Information Session for People Interested in Running for Trustee
+  Tuesday, March 29, at 6:30 pm – Washington Ave. Branch (Local History Room)
Current trustees will participate in a moderated panel discussion about the work of the board, why they decided to run for office, and their experiences as candidates and board members.

Budget Session and Candidate Forum
+  May 2 (Monday) at 6 pm – Washington Ave. Branch
+  May 5 (Thursday) at 6 pm – Pine Hills Branch
The public can learn more about the proposed 2017 budget, ask questions of library administration, and meet the Albany residents running for library trustee.

Nominating petitions for the three trustee seats are available now on the library’s website and will soon be available at all branches. Two of the open trustee positions carry full five-year terms that start on July 1. The third position is to fill the remaining year on the unexpired term of a trustee who resigned. The library’s nine-member Board of Trustees is charged with making the rules, regulations, and policies under which the seven-location library system operates. The expiring terms are currently held by Donna Dixon, Timothy Smith, and John Davis.

Further details about the 2017 library budget and candidates will be made available on the library’s website and at all library branches.

Stephanie Simon

Stephanie Simon is manager of APL's Communication and Creative Services Department, which provides content and information for the library's website, social media, publications, videos, podcasts, and other outlets. Stephanie also manages APL's public relations and marketing efforts.