Library Hosting Public Forums To Solicit Enhancement Ideas

The Seattle Public Library will hold three community meetings in January to discuss improving Library services. The meetings will focus on options for enhancing its collection of books and materials, increasing operating hours, upgrading computers and online services and improving building maintenance. Strategies for stabilizing Library funding will be reviewed.

The community meetings are scheduled as follows:

  • 10:00 am to 12:00 noon Saturday, Jan. 7, Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave., Auditorium (206-386-4636)
  • 12:00 noon  to 2:00 pm Saturday, Jan. 14, Beacon Hill Branch, 2821 Beacon Ave. S. (206-684-4711)
  • 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm Wednesday, Jan. 18, Ballard Branch, 5614 22nd Ave. N.W. (206-684-4089).

“Our libraries provide essential educational resources for the residents of Seattle,” said Marcellus Turner, city librarian. “Every day we change lives – from building literacy skills at story times to providing in-depth resources and workshops for job seekers.”

At the community meetings, patrons will receive an overview of Library use and suggested options for improving customer service in the four essential service areas: collections, Library hours, computer access and building maintenance. Patrons will have an opportunity to comment on the different options, which grew out of last year’s process to develop the Library’s new Strategic Plan.

Patrons also will learn more about the Library budget and alternatives for helping stabilize funding to support Library services now and into the future. Budget reductions have resulted in resource and service cuts and a possible levy is being explored.

“With the 1998 Libraries for All building renewal program, we made sure our Library facilities were up-to-date and able to support Library programs and users,” Library Board President Marie McCaffrey said. “Now we are entering the next phase of bringing the Libraries for All vision to life – extending our reach through improved operating hours, books and materials available in different formats and expanded digital access.”

Turner and Library Board members will be present at the meetings to listen to the public. “The public drives everything we do and we want patrons to be involved in helping shape Library services, now and for the next generation,” Turner said.

For more information, visit www.spl.org and select “Libraries for All: A Plan for the Present, A Foundation for the Future,” or call 206-386-4636.

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