February 18, 2018

Niagara Falls Library in Trouble

By LJ Staff

The Niagara Falls Public Library, NY, which received only half of its $2 million annual budget from the city, still remains in jeopardy. Voters rejected a June referendum that would have allowed increased property taxes for the libraries. Now Mayor Vince Anello wants to fund the system through the end of they year by using nearly all of the city’s reserves. However, according to WGRZ News, library officials urged caution. "I know that the funding is not adequate to keep the libraries open," said Dolores Marino, president of the library board.

Also, Anello asked the library to seek a variance from the state library so that it could trim the operating hours to 44 – while the weekly hours were previously 56, the library offers 52 hours of summer service. However, library director Betty Babanoury noted out that she would be required to offer a plan of correction, indicating how the library would seek to regain its former level of service. With inadequate funds only promised through the end of the year, that task would prove to be, "at best, a short-term solution to a long-term problem," said Babanoury. The city’s next budget must be approved by October.