WOODLAND PARK, NJ - The The Alfred Baumann Public Library is working to educate residents of all municipalities and ask them to contact their legislators to support the New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act. The legislation would provide $125,000,000 in general obligation bonds to finance capital projects in state libraries.
The library has preprinted postcards available at the front desk that residents may sign, stamp and put in the mail to local representatives. Residents of any town are welcome to pick them up.
There is also a link at www.abwplibrary.org to a form to contact representatives Sen Kevin O'Toole and Assemblymen David Russo and Kevin Rooney.
Library staff will be holding two presentations next week at Four Seasons @ Great Notch on the bond act. The aim is to educate the residents about the act and present ways they can be instrumental in advocating for their public library. The meetings will be held on Tuesday, June 13 at 2 p.m. and Wednesday, June 14 at 7 p.m.
According to a recent survey of New Jersey Public Libraries:
- 50% were not ADA compliant
- 60% were in need of additional square footage
- 78% were in need of interior painting or recarpeting
- 74% need new furnishings
- 49% need electrical upgrades
“Our library has not had a major renovation since it was built in 1979," noted library director Linda Hoffman. "Libraries have changed significantly, they are used for more than just books. They are the heart of the community and serve people of all ages. We add substantial value to the community and are an integral part of elevating the quality of life by providing quality services, materials, and programs. However, we have maximized our available space and the facility is outdated."
The demand for technology, programming, meeting, and quiet space has grown substantially over the last decade, she added, but the current size and configuration of the building is not able to facilitate the demand.
"Passage of this legislation would afford us the opportunity to bring our library building to the 21st century standard that our residents deserve," Hoffman said.
In addition, passage would add jobs to the economy and benefit countless libraries throughout the state.