« Atlantic Yards Report: Media Attention Deficiency | Main | Futher Coverage of Eminent Domain Ruling »

May 17, 2009

Atlantic Yards YES! Libraries, NO!!

The City of New York was able to give Developer Bruce Ratner $100 million to acquire private property in the footprint of the proposed Atlantic Yards project - a number that just happens to be the budget for the Brooklyn Public Library.

Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Drastic Cutbacks Are Expected at Brooklyn Public Library

Looking at a $17.5 million cut in city funding, the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) could face hefty lay-offs and stiff cuts in hours and service.

If the mayor’s proposed executive budget is adopted, it will represent an almost 20 percent reduction in BPL’s overall budget of $100 million. This would translate into lay-offs of approximately 175 staff members, which is one out of every six full-time employees, says BPL’s Marketing and Communications Director Stephanie Arck.

The fifth largest library system in the country, BPL will also have to enact huge cuts in the library’s operating hours. Most neighborhood libraries would only be open five hours a day, five days a week. The six-day service that is now universal in the libraries will only remain at 15 of the 60 libraries in the system. “It’s enormous. This is the biggest cut in service since 2001,” said Arck.

Posted by steve at May 17, 2009 6:00 AM