Several York City Council members suggested Tuesday that funding devoted to Martin Library, which was cut out of the 2008 budget, be reinstated in 2009.
Bill Schell, chief executive officer of Martin Library, spoke about the library's programs and funding during a city council meeting.
The library receives about 13 percent of its funding from local governments, while libraries statewide receive an average 64 percent from the local level. Martin Library raises 53 percent of its funding and gets the rest from the state.
The library used to receive $15,000 from the city, but that funding was cut in 2008, Councilman Cameron Texter said.
Schell said that made York one of about 10 municipalities in the county, including boroughs such as Railroad and Yorkana, that don't dedicate funding to the library.
Texter said he'd like to see the city give the library at least $15,000 again and maybe more. Whenever a municipality gives funding to the library, the state gives the library more, too, he said.
"It's very important to look at what the library is doing and see how, if we do put up more money, we'll get more in return," Texter said, adding that the library improves education and helps prevent crime by keeping kids off the streets.
Schell said later that the library did some extra fundraising after the city cut the library funding for 2008.
"In this corporate market . . . that increases the challenge," he said.
Joe Musso, council president, told Schell that library funding would be on an upcoming agenda.
Councilwoman Genevieve Ray, who invited Schell to the meeting, suggested in an
e-mail to Mayor John Brenner that the library receive $40,000 next year. Ray was absent Tuesday because she is recovering from surgery.
"I hope we can. This budget year is dreadful, of course," she said in an interview. "I'd like eventually to see some kind of regular funding go to the library."
Martin Library has been seeing an average of 750 visitors each Sunday since it began offering Sunday hours on Sept. 21.
"Families have been coming in in droves," said Bill Schell, chief executive officer of the library.
The library is open 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays this fall. The extra hours were paid for by the Ohio-based Cintas Corp. and other donors.
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