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8 Onondaga County libraries receive construction grants

By Journal Staff


The Onondaga County Public Library, Central Library (pictured) will receive $115,211 to renovate the basement level of the library. It is one of eight county library construction grants that State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) recently announced. (ERIC REINHARDT/ BJNN)

SYRACUSE — State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) announced that eight libraries in Onondaga County have been awarded public library construction grant funds. The capital funds, provided for in the 2017 New York State Budget, will enable the libraries to start or complete various projects that will improve patron services. 

“Libraries across my district continuously report increased patronage,” Sen. Valesky said in a news release. “I am pleased to be able to support this grant funding to help libraries with building upgrades and improved services to meet community needs.” 

The following eight libraries in Onondaga County are receiving grants. 

• Liverpool Public Library — $7,158 for upgrades to the pavilion area of the library to improve ADA access and security. 

• Northern Onondaga Public Library at Brewerton — $57,569 to replace the original roof and five skylights. 

• Northern Onondaga Public Library at Cicero — $46,370 to replace the roof and restore the water-damaged wall and book drop. 

• Northern Onondaga Public Library at North Syracuse — $103,488 to upgrade to LED lighting and to renovate the patron service and workroom areas. 

• Onondaga County Public Library, Beauchamp Branch — $16,500 to replace the HVAC system. 

• Onondaga County Public Library, Central Library — $115,211 to renovate the basement level of the library. 

• Onondaga County Public Library, Mundy Branch — $45,917 to replace the HVAC system. 

• Tully Free Library — $5,754 to replace the library’s existing fluorescent lighting with LED lighting. 

New York’s public libraries are in “urgent need” of renovation and upgrading, Valesky contended. A recent survey showed a “documented need” for public library construction and renovation projects totaling more than $1.7 billion. More than 51 percent of the over 1,000 public library buildings in communities across New York are more than 60 years old. Another 33 percent are over three decades old, the release stated. Many of New York’s local public libraries cannot accommodate users with disabilities, are energy inefficient, and lack Internet, computer, and other electronic technologies for users because of outdated and inadequate electrical wiring. Many libraries lack sufficient space to house their expanding collection, address the need for adequate meeting room, or provide for public -access computers, Valesky added.

Project activities and expenditures eligible for grants from the State Aid for Library Construction Program include financing construction of new library buildings, construction of additions to existing buildings, and the renovation and/or rehabilitation of existing space. Projects may include roof replacement, purchase and installation of alternative-energy resources, new HVAC systems, windows, doors, lighting systems, electrical upgrades, and construction of new or replacement of old walkways and parking lots, per the release. New furniture, shelving and equipment, including computer equipment, may be purchased for new or newly reconfigured or renovated space. Renovations designed to provide accessibility for patrons with disabilities are a “high priority.”    

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