Thursday, 25 July 2013 00:00
Assemblyman Michael Montesano recently announced that the Hicksville Free Library, Bayville Free Library, and Bethpage Public Library will be receiving Public Library Construction Grants. The Bethpage and Hicksville libraries are getting $100,000 each to repair its out-of-date lighting system and major building renovations respectively.
“Our libraries provide access to vital information for the public, as well as play host to programs offering culturally enriching opportunities,” said Montesano. “These construction grants will greatly assist in providing the crucial infrastructure repairs our libraries need to continue admirably serving our communities’ needs.”
New York’s public libraries are in urgent need of renovation and upgrading. A recent survey showed a documented need for public library construction and renovation projects totaling more than $2.2 billion. More than 40 percent of the over 1,000 public library buildings in communities across New York are over 60 years old and another 30 percent are more than three decades old. Due to this, many of the state’s local public libraries are unable to accommodate users with disabilities, are energy inefficient, cannot provide Internet and computer and other electronic technologies to users because of outdated and inadequate electrical wiring and do not have sufficient space to house the library’s expanding collection, address the need for adequate meeting room, or provide for public access computers.
“We greatly appreciate Assemblyman Montesano’s assistance in securing funds from the Public Library Construction Grant. Here at the Hicksville Library, we are committed to continually improving the facilities to better serve our community,” said Roseann Acosta, public relations and programming representative for the Hicksville Public Library. “The renovations and relocation of staff to the new administration building has provided us with much needed space in the main building where we have begun the process of making vital improvements to library services.”
The Public Library Construction Grant Program is a $14 million capital-fund appropriation in the 2012 state budget for the construction and renovation of public libraries and library systems across New York State to address these issues.