Thursday, September 6, 2012

Addresses for Constituents

Here are a list of addresses of Broome County Legislators for you to contact regarding the Broome County Library. These are their home addresses, but the addresses are publicly listed - I'm not publishing anything that the legislators have not already published themselves. The e-mail addresses are legislator business addresses, if you're uncomfortable sending mail directly to your legislator.

Mark R. Whalen
Ronald J. Keibel
11 The Arena Street
PO Box 395
Binghamton, NY 13903
Whitney Point, NY 13862
Joseph A. Merrill
Michael P. Sopchak
73 Prospect Street
151 Deyo Hill Road
Binghamton, NY 13905
Johnson City, NY 13790
Jason T. Garnar
Matthew J. Pasquale
564 Chenango Street
512 Irving Avenue
Binghamton, NY 13901
Endicott, NY 13760
Joseph S. Sanfilippo
David M. Jensen
44 Crestmont Road
1312 Irma Avenue
Binghamton, NY 13905
Endicott, NY 13760
John F. Hutchings
Michael W. Schafer
2 Christopher Street
2707 Alexander Street
Binghamton, NY 13903
Endicott, NY 13760
Julie A. Lewis
John A. Black
250 Powderhouse Road
845 Debonair Drive
Vestal, NY 13850
Endwell, NY 13760
Marchie Diffendorf
Ron Heebner
483 Gorman Road
435 Main Street #123
Kirkwood, NY 13795
Johnson City, NY 13790
Wayne L. Howard
Daniel J. Reynolds
PO Box 9
309 Clayton Avenue
Port Crane, NY 13833
Vestal, NY 13850
Stephen D. Herz
Daniel D. Reynolds
787 State Route 79
2404 Charleston Avenue
Windsor, NY 13865
Vestal, NY 13850
Jerry F. Marinich
40 Clearview Place
Binghamton, NY 13901

If you don’t know your election district, call The Election Board.
Election Board: 607-778-2172

Here is Debra Preston's address. Ms. Preston is the County Executive, in charge of drafting the budget.

Debra A. Preston, County Executive
PO Box 1766
Binghamton, NY 13902

Phone: 607.778.2109
Fax: 607.778.2044

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Important Data

(By request, I have increased the font size)
Here is some budgetary data:

The Broome County Public Library's budget accounts for 0.6% of the total County budget. Cutting the library's budget is not going to do very much to save money for the County. However, the library is an un-mandated institution as far as funding goes in New York State. Thus, it is an easy target.

When the new main library building opened in 2000, it was a 72,000 square foot building. The library was open to the public 60 hours a week. These things remain true. However, in 2000, there were 47 full time staff members to work those 60 hours and maintain the 72,000 square feet. Since 2008, those staffing numbers have plummeted.

2008: 34.88 Full Time Staff
2009: 32.49 Full Time Staff
2010: 31.78 Full Time Staff
2011: 22.96 Full Time Staff
2012: 22.29 Full Time Staff
Projected 2013: 22.29 Full Time Staff

At some point, the number of full time staff drops below a minimum necessary staffing number. At that point, the library is forced to make some painful and damaging cuts, either to book purchases or to open hours, or both. Either decision adversely affects the mission of the library.

The County Executive will respond to complaints about library staffing by saying, as they have in the past, that there are mandated costs of health insurance, retirement costs, and CSEA (Civil Service Employees of America) Union raises which cannot be avoided. Maintaining the library at it's current level of funding will require cuts somewhere else or raising taxes. Rescue Our Local Library (ROLL) feels that we have reached a point in terms of cutting library funding where the County Executive needs to either look for cuts elsewhere or raise taxes to fund the vital services of the library.

The 2013 budget will go from the Executive to the County Legislature at the end of August. The Legislature votes on the budget on September 20, after which convincing the Legislature to add funding back in for the library will become increasingly difficult. Within the next week, this site will feature addresses at which County residents can contact their legislator and sample letters that they can send to their legislator. More facts about the budget and the library will be posted as they become available. 

For more information on ROLL, interested parties can contact Cathy Stuckart, the coordinator, at 
For more information about this site, Mike Timonin is the webmaster, and can be contacted at

Sunday, July 29, 2012

What This Is

The Broome County Public Library is funded, in large part, but the Broome County Legislature. The library represents a tiny portion of the county's overall budget, but since the library's funding is not mandated by the state (unlike school funding and many other things) the legislature can easily restrict funding for the library when it feel that it needs to save money.  The current budget for the county proposes to slash the funding for the library. This space will, hopefully, serve as a place to organize against that decision, providing concerned people with resources, including addresses for their legislators and the Broome County executive.  There will also be information about the budget process and the funding for the library. Finally, there will be sample letters that concerned citizens can use as a template to send to their county legislators and the county executive.