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March 19, 2019  |  

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Keeping our Library Viable

Published Feb. 20, 2019

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The Scranton Library Friends Inc. (SLF, a 501(c)3 organization) operates exclusively to assist the Scranton Memorial Library (a separate 501(c)3) in meeting the educational and literary needs of its users. Our library is an unusual entity both in the way it is organized and in its sources of funding.

I believe most of us think of our library as a “town” facility, but the library is governed by a Board of Trustees who serve without remuneration. The town usually funds 85 percent of its budget, leaving an elusive 15 percent to be secured in other ways. Hence, the existence of the SLF.

Thanks to our members and their ongoing work to raise funds, in January the SLF was able to donate $15,000 to the library to provide for programming and other needs. Directors of the SLF receive no pay nor do its multitude of workers who lift, sort, and sell endless but wonderful donated books. Others organize events, bake and cook refreshments, move furniture and other required miracles, and squeeze in time for just about anything that needs doing.

But we could never fill the gap on our own. Other generous and kind people are right with us providing financial donations and volunteer help for our library. All this activity rewards each participant in unique and personal ways.

I want to commend all who take part in keeping our library viable while gaining new life with renovation and expansion, including all taxpayers. They are Madison, a community where life and learning thrive. Thanks go to all.

Joan O’Neill
Scranton Library Friends

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