Library Budget Vote is May 16
Albany city residents go to the polls Tuesday, May 16, to vote on the Albany Public Library 2018 tax levy and choose three new members for the Board of Trustees. Next year’s budget plan was approved by the library’s Board of Trustees at its March meeting.
The proposed 2018 operating tax levy of $6,981,873 reflects a 1.5 percent increase in the annual total tax levy. If approved by voters in May, this increase means that the owner of a $150,000 home would pay approximately $3.49 more in library taxes next year.
“Albany Public Library has worked hard to become a lean and efficient organization that lives within its means. This includes finding alternative funding sources, keeping purse strings tight, and strengthening partnerships,” said Scott C. Jarzombek, the library’s executive director. “The proposed 2018 budget will allow the library to meet patron demand for more programming, outreach, and meeting room availability.”
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 laptop use, WiFi access, in-home WiFi hotspots, and mobile app; free public programs including children’s story times, computer classes, financial literacy workshops, music performances, book reviews, and exercise classes; 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
March 28 (Tuesday) at 6:30 pm – Washington Ave. Branch (Local History Room)
Current trustees will participate in a discussion about the work of the board, why they decided to run for office, and their experiences as candidates and board members.
• Budget and Candidate Forums
o May 1 (Monday) at 6:30 pm – Washington Ave. Branch
o May 4 (Thursday) at 6:30 pm – Pine Hills Branch
The public can learn more about the proposed 2018 budget, ask questions of library administration, and meet the Albany residents running for library trustee.
Nominating petitions for the three trustee positions are available on the library’s website and at all branches. All three open trustee positions carry five-year terms that start on July 1. 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 Mary-Ellen Piché, Brenda Robinson, and Arlene Way.