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Roy L. Williams
Director of Public Relations
Birmingham Public Library
Work No.: (205) 226-3746
Cell No. : (205) 568-0067
a: 2100 Park Place, Birmingham, AL 35203
w: www.bplonline.org
e: roy.williams@cobpl.org

BPL Board of Trustees Issues Statement on Ongoing Library Services
 
Birmingham, Ala. – The Birmingham Public Library Board of Trustees is exploring options to cut costs and improve efficiency to alleviate the shortfall to the library system’s budget as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic on the City of Birmingham’s finances.  

“The Library Board has been inundated with inquiries, questions and concerns from the public regarding the future of the Birmingham Public Library System,” said Eunice Johnson Rogers, President of the BPL Board of Trustees in a statement issued today, Wednesday, September 2.  
 
“We all know the COVID-19 Pandemic has had a devastating effect on our community. We are reviewing all efficiencies to be as fiscally responsible as possible,” she said.  
 
With 19 library branches across Birmingham, BPL is one of the largest library systems in the Southeast. Rogers said the BPL Board is taking a hard look at streamlining operations and appropriating budgeted resources to its highest and best uses. To date, the Library Board of Trustees has decided to close one branch, Eastwood Branch Library.  Eastwood is BPL’s only library branch under a lease; the other 18 library branches are in city-owned buildings. 
 
“We did not consider it fiscally responsible to renew a lease in the middle of this crisis,” Rogers said. “However, we are exploring creative partnerships for that area.” 
 
Rogers reported to the Birmingham City Council on Tuesday, August 25, 2020, that the Library Board had made no decision on furloughing library employees. 
 
“The BPL Board of Trustees appreciates Mayor Woodfin’s inclusion of the Birmingham Public Library System in his proposed budget in the amount of $12.8 Million,” Rogers said in a statement during the City Council’s 2021 Budget hearing held on August 31. “We are grateful for the Council’s approval of that sum or any additional amount the Council believes to be in order.” 
 
Since the onset of the Pandemic, BPL has continued to provide quality services for the public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  

“The BPL Board of Trustees is committed to the mission of the Birmingham Public Library to provide the highest quality experience to our community for lifelong learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment,” Rogers told the City Council in closing remarks Monday. “The Library Board will continue to work cooperatively with City leadership to fulfill the Board’s responsibilities.” 
 
About the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) 
For additional information about the programs and services of the Birmingham Public Library, visit our website at www.cobpl.org and be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BPL. The mission of Birmingham Public Library is to provide the highest quality library service to our citizens for life-long learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment. This system—with 19 locations and serving the community for over 130 years—is one of the largest library systems in the southeast. 
Page Last Modified: 9/21/2020 9:26 AM