Library needs your financial support

Editor:

The Back on Track Committee formed last fall in the wake of huge cuts in library funding in the state budget to raise funds to help the Newcomerstown Library maintain services. The committee's goal was, and still is, to retire the mortgage on the new building and provide funds to keep the library operating. The total sum needed to pay off the mortgage is $261,000. Several fundraising events held since last October have raised a small portion of the funds we need. In the mean time, the financial situation has grown worse. We are now more than $2,000 in the red at the end of each month. This is quickly draining the small amount of reserve of funds -- funds that are set aside for maintenance problems and other unforeseen expenses.

Library hours have been cut as well as staff. No new book, CD or DVD orders have been placed since March 2009. That is a whole year without new items! The library board is considering deeper, more fare-ranging cuts.

To break down our daunting goal and make it more manageable, the Back on Track Committee is looking for 500 angels to help save our library by contributing $500 (or better yet 250 angels to contribute $1,000) by Nov. 1, 2010, before the next payment on the mortgage is due. Enlist your family and co-workers in making a group pledge to build a communal angel. For example: A graduating class, third-grade teachers or afternoon shift at Wendy's could pool their funds to create an angel. The gift can be a one-time gift or spread out over the next several months. Of course, we will accept any donation amount large or small. This campaign will help relieve the worst of our budget crisis but will not solve the long-term reduction in library funding by the state legislature. The library board will put a replacement operating levy on the November ballot to meet the long-term financial needs of the library. All funds contributed by Library Angels at this time will go to pay off the mortgage and/or to provide operating dollars for the library. Names of our Library Angels will be posted in the library's lobby and in the Newcomerstown News. Please add your name to the list of Angels working to keep our library open and thriving for everyone in our community.

Feel free to call the library at 498-8228 or 498-7706 if you have any questions, need further facts about the financial situation, or would like to attend the Back on Track Committee meetings and find out how you can be a part of the solution.

Thank you in advance for your help, and for caring about our library and for our community.

Dennis G. Belle, Sandalynn Henry, Joan Brode and John Cigavic

Back on Track Committee Fundraising Committee

Capital Campaign Committee

Newcomerstown