Posts Tagged ‘Chattahoochee Valley Libraries’

Chattahoochee Valley Libraries Honors Five “Volunteers of the Year”

June 10, 2010

By Jim Shehy, Volunteer Coordinator,
Chattahoochee Valley Libraries

Columbus, GA – (CVL news release) The Chattahoochee Valley Libraries have always appreciated their volunteers.  Men and women of all ages give their time and talent to the Library system in order to contribute to their community and assist in making the public Library a vital community resource.  For the past several years one very deserving and very dedicated volunteer is honored with the title “Volunteer of the Year.” 
On Monday, June 14, the Chattahoochee Valley Libraries will commemorate their previous five adult Volunteer of the Year honorees by installing tree dedication plaques in their honor.  Past recipients Paul Argue (2005), Carolyn Smoot (2006), Charles Batastini (2007), Frank and Donna Doyle (2008), and last year’s 2009 recipient Art Halouska will each be recognized with a commemorative inscription and tree dedicated to them along the Columbus Public Library Campus.
“Volunteers give so much to the Library System,” notes Jim Shehy, Volunteer Coordinator.  “They are extremely important men and woman; you can always count on our volunteers to have a smile and lend a hand whenever needed.  I don’t know what we would do without them!”
 All Library volunteers are recognized during National Volunteer Week each spring and the 2010 Volunteer of the Year honoree will be announced at the Libraries’ annual volunteer recognition luncheon held each fall.  Stop by the Columbus Public Library and see just one of the ways Chattahoochee Valley Libraries show their support and appreciation to their volunteers.
If you wish to become a volunteer or for additional information about the volunteer program at the Chattahoochee Valley Libraries, please contact Jim Shehy at the Columbus Public Library (706) 243-2674.

Columbus Public Library, Columbus, Georgia

For the First Time, the Chattahoochee Valley Libraries System is Remembered in a Will, and AKA Pitches in to Help Terry Branch Construction

November 15, 2008

  For the first time, the Chattahoochee Valley Libraries system has received money left in a will. Mrs. Lorette Rosenstrach left $5,000 to the library system foundation. She wanted to leave the money to the libraries because she said they do so much for the communities they serve. Claudya Muller, director of CVL, said it was encouraging that Mrs. Rosenstrach did that, and she hopes others will remember the libraries in their wills.

   She also got another $5 thousand donation, this one following her talk to the Alpha Kappa Alpha, an African American sorority.  It goes toward building the new Mildred Terry Branch in downtown Columbus.  Muller says that now makes the shortfall $1.75 million.  It was $1.8 million.  The money alloted by the school board to build the branch three years ago isn’t enough to build it now that construction costs have greatly increased. AKA says it will work toward raising more money for the branch. Perhaps others will pitch and help, otherwise the money is coming out of the system’s operating fund reserves.  With the economy headed downward, those operating funds may be needed to prevent cutting services when they are needed most. The state has already cut its contribution to the system by more than six percent.

Though Hit by State Budget Cuts, Chattahoochee Valley Libraries System Plans No Reductions in Services

November 13, 2008
  The Chattahoochee Valley Libraries system has no plans to reduce services anytime soon, even though there is a budget crunch. That’s what Director Claudya Muller told me. The Chattahoochee Valley Libraries system is receiving less state money now, more than six percent less. She said she does not foresee services cut, at least, not until July of 2010, providing the state doesn’t levy more cuts.  Considering that library services are in greater demand during economic slowdowns, that is good news. 

    And the demand is definitely greater. Muller  told me that usage increased by eleven percent in October over October of last year. She definitely credited that to what’s happening to the economy. Demand is going to get even greater, not just because of the economy, but because of the influx of 30,000 more people into the area as the BRAC expansion at Fort Benning goes into effect. 

  So far the library is making up some of the state money lost by not filling two high-salary – high for Columbus (that’s my remark) – positions. We are talking a hundred thousand dollars.  One is a secretarial position and the other in the Genealogy Department. She hopes to use volunteers to pick up the slack.

  Muller says our library system has gone from worst in the state to third best, but she wants to even better than that.  For instance, she says the system gets $700,000 a year for new materials, when the national norm for the population size the system serves is $1.2 million. 

  How can it get more money? It can appeal to donors and it will, but counting on private charity for most of it is unrealistic. The Muscogee County School Board could raise the system’s tax millage. It’s now 1.5 mills.  Muller would like to see that increased to 2 mills over time.  It can do that since the school board can spend up to 5 mills on the library, the Columbus Museum, and the school crossing-guard program.

  There are even more complications to this story, such as funding for the new Mildred Terry Branch not keeping up with increased construction costs and the system having to dip into operating reserves to finish the branch. You have to wonder what would happen if those operating reserves were actually needed for operating expenses.

   Since most of us aren’t billionaires, we can’t pour money into the system to help it when it is needed most. But, we can give something that adds up to a lot of money saved for the libraries; we can give of our time. About 300 people now serve as volunteers. The time given amounts to what it would cost to pay seven full-time jobs at the library.

  I’m giving a paltry four hours each month clerking in the Friends of Libraries bookstore. I enjoy meeting all types of people who come in to buy very reasonably priced books; so I’ll have no problem at least doubling that. Also, I serve on the Friends board. If you love books (and CDs, DVDs, Audio Cassettes, computers, lectures, moivies) and want to support a very worthwhile asset to our community, join me in volunteering.  You are needed.

  And you will be treated to lunch at least ONCE A YEAR!

  Columbus Public Library Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon

Columbus Public Library Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon