In the days of Kindle, one senator recognizes libraries still play a major part in communities.
Recently, state Sen. John Flanagan (R) announced that four libraries in his district, including Setauket’s Emma S. Clark Memorial Library, would be receiving state funding to offset the cost of construction projects.
“Public libraries are more than books — they are community centers that provide valuable programs and services,” Flanagan said in a statement. “They are a proven resource for residents of all ages and we need to continue to work with the leaders of these facilities to provide them with the funding they need to fulfill their mission.”
The construction grants, which were allocated in the 2017–18 state budget for public library construction and broadband infrastructure projects, total $209,638, and are administered by the New York State Education Department and the New York State Library, according to a statement from Flanagan’s office.
Emma Clark Library received $9,638 for the installation of energy-efficient LED fixtures and bulbs. Ted Gutmann, library director, said the LED project is already complete, and the grant is a reimbursement for the project cost.
“This is win-win for our patrons who won’t have to directly fund the project, and at the same time will get a more efficient library that will help save them money for years to come,” Gutmann said. “Senator Flanagan’s efforts in supporting libraries are much appreciated, and on behalf of the board of trustees and myself, thanks again for being a friend of the Emma S. Clark Memorial Library.”
The Legislature approved an additional $34 million in funding for projects as part of the 2018–19 state budget. The approved projects for that funding will be announced in the summer of 2019, according to the statement.