Somewhere Bette Midler Bemoans These Library Cuts In New York City

New York Life
NYC public libraries shutter weekend service due to Mayor Adams budget cuts
By: Charline Charles
Nov 16, 2023

NEW YORK (PIX11) — Public libraries in Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn will be forced to close on weekends after Mayor Eric Adams announced the full list of proposed cuts to city funding.

The 5% budget cut will impact every city agency across New York City including the police and sanitation departments, as well as the public library system.

“Brooklyn Public Library, Queens Public Library, and The New York Public Library regret to announce that as a result of mid-year budget cuts, we must eliminate seven-day service across the city, including ending Sunday service at the vast majority of branches that currently offer it,” said library leaders.

The budget cuts will also impact spending on library materials, programming, and building maintenance and repairs.

Earlier this year, the Brooklyn, Queens, and New York public libraries held rallies to protest $36.2M in proposed budget cuts in the FY24 budget at City Hall. Elected officials, union representatives, and library advocates rallied to preserve funding for libraries.

Libraries were exempt from budget cuts in June after “a spirited campaign that included support from everyday New Yorkers, as well as celebrities like Sarah Jessica Parker, Bette Midler, Chelsea Clinton, and others,” library leaders said.

Library officials expect more budget cuts next year which will result in deeper service impacts.

Here is the full list of each library branch impacted by service reduction:

  • The New York Public Library
    • The elimination of Sunday service at all locations that currently offer it. The last day of Sunday service will be Nov. 26.
      • Bronx Library Center (Bronx)
      • Grand Concourse (Bronx)
      • Parkchester (Bronx)
      • Stephen A. Schwarzman Building (Manhattan)
      • SNFL (Manhattan)
      • Jefferson Market (Manhattan)
      • Washington Heights (Manhattan)
      • Todt Hill–Westerleigh (Staten Island)
  • Queens Public Library
    • The elimination of Sunday service at two locations. The last day of Sunday service will be Nov. 26.
      • Central Library (Jamaica)
      • Flushing Library
  • Brooklyn Public Library
    • The elimination of Sunday service at all locations that currently offer it, including Central Library. The last day of Sunday service is Dec. 17.
      • Borough Park 
      • Brooklyn Heights
      • Central
      • Greenpoint
      • Kings Highway
      • Macon
      • Midwood
      • New Lots

Charline Charles is a digital journalist from Brooklyn who has covered local news along with culture and arts in the New York City area since 2019. She joined PIX11 News in 2022. See more of her work here.

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