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Library plans program expansions in 2021

Happy New Year!

I believe it is safe to say 2020 was a memorable year for most of us. As for the staff at the William Bradford Huie Library, I can say we have had some ups and downs, and it has been a learning experience. We have added two new part-time staff members, Alex VanKoughnett and Sarah Laughmiller. Please welcome them the next time you stop by the library.

Although it was far from a “normal” year, we are blessed to have the support of our mayor, city council, library board and Huie Library League and help from our Hartselle city departments.

This year, in addition to our normal operating budget, we have been given two fantastic opportunities. The first is from Sen. Arthur Orr in the way of $10,000. We are planning to use this to expand our e-book access for our patrons and to develop virtual programing. We are very excited to provide new services in this era of “new normal,” and we are extremely thankful for Sen. Orr’s generous support.

Our second opportunity is a Library Service and Technology Grant through Alabama Public Library Services. This grant is federally funded by the Grants to States Program run by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and is the largest grant program run by the Institute.

This year we have been awarded $20,000. This grant requires a 25 percent match. Our Huie Library League will provide the match, which will bring the total amount to $25,000.

We will use this grant to update our collection, add new authors and replace many outdated or worn books. We are also seeking requests from our patrons and the public for new authors, genres or additional subject matters.

We hope you have a safe, happy New Year and hope to see you soon at the library!