It is important for the residents of Freeport to know that two of the Freeport Library’s stalwart staff members are taking “early retirement” – a part of the town’s efforts to present a zero increase in the next budget. The employees will become part-time staff, creating a savings to the town through decrease in hours and benefits. Each will receive a one-time early retirement bonus. They would rather have kept their full-time status. So the town saves some money and library staff time is cut. Who wins?
As a member of the library board I am acutely aware of the actions the library staff has taken to reduce costs without impacting the services to the public. The thermostat is down in the winter, energy-saving bulbs have replaced incandescents, a new solar grid on the roof is providing much of the electricity and the cooling system is reduced.
The library will continue to serve myriad of needs in the community far beyond loaning of books, videos and CDs. The staff provides or arranges for a broad range of educational programming from infants to elders and provides after school supervision for many middle school students.
Be proud of your library. Value your librarians. Be proactive in protecting this valuable community resource.