On June 14, Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York City council were able to secure 33 million in additional funding in the FY20 executive budget for New York’s three library systems.
Many were shocked when Mayor de Blasio, an avid user of the park slope branch in Brooklyn, wanted to slash the New York City’s library system’s funding. Mayor De Blasio proposed cutting the funds at $10.4 million in operating funds from the city’s three public library systems in his latest budget proposal. The libraries seem to have grown under de Blasio’s watch by 88 million according to Spokesmen Raul Contreras with the Daily News. However, with a cut in New York City’s libraries, they would be unable to provide programming, updated facilities, more staff and security, and longer branch hours.
Unable to deal with the decrease in funding of all three Library systems in New York City (New York, Brooklyn, and Queens) banded together in #InvestInLibraries.The increase in funding would allow the systems to maintain their current upkeep as cost arises, but also continue to provide for New York communities for generations.
Advocates such as actress Sarah Jessica Parker were able to speak for the public on the investment in libraries, “Libraries mean a great deal to me and my family. I have been visiting my local library and borrowing books for as far back as I can recall. For the past couple of decades, Jefferson Market Library in Greenwich Village has been my local branch, and for my family and our community it is not only a regular neighborhood stop for books, programs, and more, it is a cornerstone, a beacon, and one of the most beloved buildings in our community. I don’t know what we’d do without it. I recently learned that the City is proposing budget cuts that would significantly impact services—fewer hours, fewer librarians, fewer collections, fewer programs, fewer classes.” Even if not as famous as Parker people were able to send in over 120,000 letters and 5,000 sticky notes according to Tony Marx the New York’s public library president.
The additional funding in New York City’s libraries further proves the importance the libraries are to the New York community. New York’s community relies upon and well as uses the library for all it’s purposes no matter the need or want, the libraries provide it.
A library is more than a place that provides books and computers they provide a community. Whether you are rich or you are poor, the library is a place where you can study, read, go to one of the various enrichment programs they provide, play games, have storytime, the library can bring everyone together regardless of race, class, and or gender. The investment in the libraries is a win for all as the libraries of New York City continue to show importance in New York’s diverse and expansive community.