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SITUATION: The Buffalo & Erie County Public Library faces a $6.8 million shortfall for 2011 if the budget proposed by County Executive Chris Collins stands. Library hours will be reduced from 332 to 205.

COST: Buffalo/Erie County library services cost $28.64 per capita while comparably sized cities pay $43 and up per capita.

VALUE:  If you borrow just 2 books and 10 movies a month rather than buy these items, you save $74 in a month and close to $900 in a year.

INCREASING IMPORTANCE OF LIBRARIES: In tough economic times, especially with high unemployment, people need libraries: --Circulation of library materials continues to trend at over 6 million items per year. --People depend so much on the libraries’ Internet connection that many people drive to closed libraries, sit in their cars and connect on laptops through the libraries’ wifi. --Bookstores and high speed Internet are not available in some of the small communities B&ECPL serves so these residents rely on the reading material and high-speed Internet that their local libraries provide. --Economically challenged households in Buffalo and across Erie County can’t support the purchase of books, CDs or DVDs, let alone have a computer with Internet access.

LIBRARY USE INCREASE: Computer usage in Buffalo & Erie County Libraries has always been high but it has increased 25% since 2008—the beginning of the economic downturn.

QUALITY OF LIFE: Libraries uniquely contribute to the community's cultural and economic quality of life by:
--Providing equal access to information resources
--Promoting literacy and education for children and adults
--Development of programs and services for enriching life skills.

ACTION: We demand Erie County Legislators reject County Executive Chris Collins' 2011 budget and fully fund the Library System to maintain services and staff.


Library Supporters and Friends


Find and contact your Legislator.

Email Chris Collins.  

Email BECPL about the planned cuts.

Template for Letters to Legislators.  Write Now!

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