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Bridgeville library plans for financial future

| Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, 9:03 p.m.
Bridgeville Public Library office manager Cheryl Conroy helps Jim Ferris of Bridgeville set up an email account at the library. Randy Jarosz | For The Bridgeville Area News

The Bridgeville Public Library may devise a strategic plan and revise its mission statement in response to recent financial difficulties.

Library Director Donna Taylor said last week that the strategic plan will give the library, its new board members and new advisory members “a focus.” When the new library was built in 2010, “there was a lack of strategic plans for financial sustainability,” said Joyce Heinrich, fundraising coordinator at the library since July 1.

As part of a new strategic plan, the library's 2013 board of directors — which met for the first time this month — wants input not only from people who use the library regularly, but those who don't.

“I think what we want to know is, what can we offer, what can we do that we are not yet doing?” Taylor said. “This will help us to know what we are doing right, as well as what we can do better. This will help us to be a much better library.”

The Bridgeville Public Library is located on McMillen Street, just off of Dewey Avenue. At a cost of about $4 million, it was built with state grant money and monies from a trust fund.

There remains, however, a $2 million mortgage on the building, Heinrich said, which triggered cuts in employees' hours and staff programs.

Now, there is a move to offset this, Heinrich said.

“We have some programs in (mind), some things we want to do to offset this,” she said.

Bridgeville Public Library already has reached out to Scott Public Library and the Chartiers Valley School District in an effort to coordinate events.

This will include monthly events, beginning next month, to raise money for the library. The building, which has more room for people than books nowadays, will be getting more use in the coming months, said advisory board member Kim Losego.

“There will be a concert, an art exhibit or some art form happening at the library every month,” Losego said.

The 2013 board of directors officially met for the first time earlier this month. Becky Wisbon, the new president of the board of directors, and Heinrich both say they are impressed with the new advisory board, or non-voting board, because of its “cultural and educational diversity.”

“The advisory board is comprised of artists, accountants, attorneys, marketers, opera singers, and homemakers...(This) is an exciting time for the Bridgeville Public Library and the community,” Wisbon said.

Jeff Widmer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5810 or jwidmer@tribweb.com.

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