Monday, July 15, 2013
Last week-Public Advocate Bill de Blasio Comes Out Against CLP and Citizens Defending Libraries is plaintiff in lawsuit that has put CLP on hold until at least this fall. Here you can find links to articles and photos.
Sizing Up Deceptive Representations By New York Public Library On Its Central Library Plan: We’re NOT Shrinking Library Space, We Are Making MORE Library Space! (Saturday, July 13, 2013)
Monday, July 15, (7:00-9:00 pm)
Ken Lowy is hosting afundraiser for City Councilman Stephen Levin at his Brooklyn Heights Cinema(suggested donation $25 and up)
(CDL is not endorsing candidates but we are noting which candidates are being supportive and Levin was very strong at Assemblyman Kellner"s hearing on the 27th of June.)
70 Henry Street, (at Orange St
WNYC Leonard Lopate show will be doing a segment on the NYPL Central Library Plan with Scott Sherman, David Levering-Lewis and Michael Kimmelman. People can comment on the show page which will be put up shortly beforehand and it is good to do so because the show 's producers judge interest in topics partly by the number of comments:http://www.wnyc.org/shows/lopate/
Sign up ASAP- What developers will be showing up?
Upcoming Events, You can help
Canvass the Mid-Manhattan library, 40th Street and 5th Ave on Thursday from 12:30-2:00.
Canvass Brooklyn Heights Library next Friday from 9:00-11:30 AM. Bring them cold water and thank the staff for working in an unairconditioined building!
Citizens Defending Libraries stands for the rights for all to access information and public libraries. We also stand against the exploitation of public resources for private gain and the exclusion of the public from decisions made about the publically owned resources.
Here is a letter you can copy and send to save the Brooklyn Heights Library
Kellnerm@assembly.state.ny.us ,firstname.lastname@example.org, GetHelp@pubadvocate.nyc.gov , email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Dear Assembly members Micah Kellner and Joan Millman, Public Advocate Bill De Blasio, Council members Stephen Levin and Letitia James,
We are very encouraged by the steps you are taking to investigate, host hearings, listen to and follow up on the growing concerns the public has about our libraries. We are writing to you now to ask you for particular focus on theBrooklyn Heights Library, the most well used library apart from Grand Army in Brooklyn, serving about a half million citizens a year.
Our recent visits indicate to us that the BPL leadership is deliberately running this successful library into the ground in a number of ways and making conscious choices to drive people away. All of the below is highly suspect in that it follows the BPL’s expressed wish to sell and shrink the library. Remember that the air conditioner broke and “couldn’t be repaired” only after the BPL concluded it wanted to sell the library.
*Refusing to fix the air conditioner! This is cruel to the staff, the patrons, the donors, and the seniors who depend on a cool library in the summer. This is also cruel to those with disabilities who cannot use other libraries because the Brooklyn Heights Library is the only one with subway to street level elevator service and is the only one accessible by 8 subways and 9 bus lines.
*Reduced hours to mornings and lunchtime only, preventing anyone who is working from attending except on Saturday morning.
*Unpredictable library hours with frequent closings due to heat.
*Children’s programs have been eliminated including chess, reading and story times, arts and crafts.
*The Singing Program for the autistic group has been eliminated.
*Business and Career programs have been exiled or effectively eliminated and made inaccessible. BPL said they were moved to Grand Army but Brooklyn Heights is the center of businesses and universities.
*Reduced staff started this July from 20 library staff to 5, and two custodians to one.
*Poor maintenance, the bathroom is not maintained well. Computers are also dirty.
*The public elevator is out of service. A sign says just for today but it continues.
In spite of the leadership, the librarians and staff are pleasant and we appreciate their help under such dehumanizing conditions.
On behalf of all the seniors, children, teens, small business owners, parents, immigrants, and citizens who come from all boroughs to use this library, we deplore the actions of the BPL leadership. A report on the maintenance and proposed renovation costs for the library was just released by the BPL on June 20th. This was in lieu of the release of previous estimates in January. In consulting with an architectural cost review professional, we note that it does not make sense that they would sell a building just because the AC hasn’t been fixed and because there is other deferred maintenance.
The report is suspicious because it includes enormous costs for asbestos removal which presumably was done during a prior renovation. In addition, it includes all kinds of outrageous fees and percentage add-ons that end up doubling the costs, thereby constituting the bulk of much of the stated estimate.
We do not have faith in the current BPL leadership because the cost told to the Friends Group last year was that the AC would cost around $700,000, that cost went up to $3.5 million and now with the soft costs and fees they even came up with a number of over $5 million with nearly $13 million for repairs overall!!
Please help restore our faith in government and public officials by paying for an independent forensic analysis of the AC equipment in the building and to examine the report the BPL has filed. This should not be arranged by anyone from the current BPL or NYPL leadership or anyone reporting to the mayor. In addition, any previously requested cost estimate records should be furnished to the public.
Please halt the RFP process and the sale of this building until faith in the leadership can be restored. This extremely valuable public property should remain public and should continue to serve the citizens of New York as it has successfully done for decades. Speaking on behalf of Citizens Defending Libraries, we deserve better that these egregious lies and deceptions, a breach of their fiduciary duty to the public.
This message was sent to Suzannah Troy by Carolyn McIntyre through MoveOn's public petition website. MoveOn Civic Action does not endorse the contents of this message. To unsubscribe or report this email as inappropriate, click here:http://petitions.moveon.org/unsub.html?i=13913-579940-xR3L93
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Posted by Suzannah B. Troy artist at 7/15/2013 05:08:00 AM