Letter to the editor: Please vote to support the Brandon Free Public Library’s mission to serve

With voting preparation now getting under way in the Brandon area, and some contentious budgetary discussions occurring, I want to clarify some things about the Brandon Free Public Library’s appropriation request on the town ballots. Every year, Brandon, Leicester, Sudbury, and Goshen vote to approve a town appropriation to support the library’s operating budget. Every year it has passed, with no increase in the funding request for the last 5 or 6 years. To be clear about some details this year:

— This appropriation is unrelated to the building renovation project. The vote is for the library operating budget only, which encompasses things like staffing, insurance, books/DVDs, and utilities. It keeps the doors open and the lights on. None of this money goes toward the renovation (which has been entirely privately funded thus far).

— The requested amounts from each town have not increased for over five years, despite significant inflation during that time. We make do with what we have, fill in gaps as needed, or make cutbacks.  

— The library appropriation has nothing to do with town budgets, electric vehicles, bond issues, or anything else that has been discussed recently on public forums; it is completely separate and is strictly to support library operations.

— Town appropriations collectively provide about 45% of the overall library income; the rest comes from your generous donations to our Annual Appeal (thank you!), other citizen donations, apartment rents, and grants that we write.

— If the library appropriation is not passed, library operations will be significantly reduced, including eliminating open days, reduction in services, greatly reduced staffing, elimination of programs, and other cuts. In 2023, we had 55,000 visits, 2783 people attended programming, and 23,508 materials circulated.

We can’t do what we do without your support of our appropriation request.

In sum, voter-approved appropriations are critical to having a vibrant and successful library serving the greater Brandon community. This includes free internet access, technology support, copying and faxing, a library of “things” (like snowshoes, games, DVD player, projector, among others) to check out, interlibrary loan service, and of course books, magazines, audio CDs, and DVDs. You can read more about all of the services we provide on page 47 of this year’s town report and as always please reach out to me with any questions or concerns. Please vote “Yes” on your town’s appropriation so the Brandon Free Public Library can continue to serve all of us.


Molly Kennedy, Director

Brandon Free Public Library

Share this story:
Back to Top