A rendering of the completed renovation an addition of the John Jermain Memorial Library on Main Street in Sag Harbor.
By Kathryn G. Menu
New York State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele, Jr. announced that East Hampton Library, John Jermain Memorial Library, Mastic-Moriches-Shirley Community Library, and Shelter Island Public Library are recipients of $724,655 in New York State Public Library Construction Grants.
The John Jermain Memorial Library (JJML) in Sag Harbor has earned $227,041 to restore the 101-year-old library. The East Hampton Library has also earned $342,262 in funding for its children’s addition project. The Shelter Island Public Library was also the recipient of $91,590 earmarked to improve the efficiency, accessibility and safety of that facility. Lastly, the Mastic-Moriches-Shirley Community Library and Shirley was given funds to install an energy efficient boiler.
According to Thiele’s office, New York’s public libraries are in urgent need of renovation and upgrading. A recent survey showed a documented need for public library construction and renovation projects in the state totaling more than $2.2 billion. More than 48 percent of the more than 1,000 public library buildings in communities across New York are over 60 years old. Another 30 percent are more than three decades old. Many New York libraries are unable to accommodate users with disabilities, are energy insufficient, cannot provide Internet, computer and other electronic technologies to users because of outdated and inadequate electrical wiring and do not have space for meeting rooms or to even house a collection.
“With libraries now experiencing remarkable increases in use, and with budget cuts creating significant hardship, I am thrilled so many of my constituents will benefit from increased library resources made possible through these state funds.”