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Greenburgh To Consider Consolidating Libraries
Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner says he plans to meet with the Greenburgh Library Board on Tuesday to discuss a proposal that would create an Independent Library District, making the Greenburgh Public Library separate from Town Government.
Feiner says voters should consider whether it's worthwhile to consolidate the Greenburgh Library with the Ardsley,Dobbs Ferry,Hastings,Irvington and Tarrytown Libraries and allow individuals to decide on the library budget. Such a move, he says would save money, allow the district to share staff, and coordinate hours and purchasing.
If such a change is made, Feiner says, it would require village/town support. The town cannot unilaterally create a town-wide library district.
Said Feiner, "With a consolidation,you would be able to move staff around from one library to another, cut back on some of the book purchasing, and video purchases and add better coordination. I think we could save a lot of money and people would still have first-class, high quality library services." He added, "The key to what I'm trying to do is figure out a way of maintaining the services but do it less expensively."
He suspects some of the villages may have some concerns because of the size and cost of operating the Greenburgh Library, fearing that if they consolidate, they may be paying more because the Greenburgh Library is more expensive to operate. He is convinced consolidation would save money in the long run.
Feiner says he also believes that if there is a Property Tax Cap enacted in Albany, it may compel this kind of consolidation to take place because municipalities will be forced to make layoffs and service cuts and "otherwise do things differently."
Putting the control of libraries in the hands of the people, he argues, would give them a greater sense of control and buying power.
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