Fullerton Observer: Library Updates

Assemblywoman supports changes to Hunt Library

Source: Fullerton Observer

1. The library has reopened with Grab & Go Service. As of March 16, the main library opened up its doors to the public. That means that library patrons can browse the shelves and use self-checkout during this spring’s library hours:

• Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday: 11am to 7pm

• Friday & Saturday: 10am to 4pm

• (Sunday & Monday: Closed.)

To maintain safety during the continuing pandemic, precautions are being taken. Visits are limited to half an hour per guest. Guests are asked to stay 6-feet apart and to wear masks. The library staff is wiping down high-touch surfaces and quarantining any returned items for 96 hours.

2. Hunt Library Revitalization: The revitalization of the Hunt Branch Library is a project funded by a grant requested by Assemblymember Sharon Quirk-Silva from the California State Library. A public survey went out early this year concerning the people’s wish-list for what to do with the new facility; a follow-up, “community visioning meeting” on that topic will be held on Sunday, April 18 2:30pm-4pm. RSVP HERE.

Board members are excited to have historical architect John Loomis of Thirtieth Street Architects onboard for the Hunt project. ArtsOC is handling the community outreach concerning the Hunt Library Revitalization Project. Those wishing to provide input can reach Rick Stein at rstein@artsoc.org.

3. Staffing: The library continues to operate with a skeleton crew due to COVID-19 and anticipated revenue shortfalls that resulted in staff reductions from 65 staff members to 25. This included a reduction in janitorial services and other cuts in response to the same concerns. On the flip side, the library this month was able to rehire the young adult librarian, and to slightly increase the hours of at least one other part-time staffer.

4. Internet and Website: As reported by Adult Services Division Manager Ken Homsley, the Board is in discussion concerning upgrades to its Internet capabilities, including Internet speed, data security, and search capabilities, with funds from the Library Foundation and other sources. One recent internal upgrade—the library has moved from Microsoft Office to Microsoft Office 360, which has allowed for better communication in meetings and teams.

5. The Friends of the Library are back in action. They are once again accepting donations.

6. Budget: The Board of Trustees agreed to dedicate the next, April 22 Board Meeting to the library budget, which will need to be decided upon in May. The fiscal outlook remains unclear at this time. As reported elsewhere in The Observer, the city of Fullerton is slated to receive  just over $35,000,000 in federal funding as a result of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. What portion of those funds, if any, will be used to restore library funding to pre-pandemic levels remains to be seen.