Parents worried over possible library closure

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The North Albany Library could soon be closing its doors.

Some families said they visit the library every day. But officials said its becoming too expensive to keep it open.

For Jaray Ellison, 10, stopping by the library is his favorite part of the day.

“Every day after school I come here, I do my homework, and I get on the computer,” he said. “I love coming here.”

It’s a safe, quiet environment to read, learn and be with friends like his buddy, 11-year-old Jayden Henry.

“You can get on the computers anytime,” Henry said.

The boys can’t imagine doing anything else after school, but soon, they might have to. The North Albany Library is located inside the YMCA. The Y is raising the rent for the space, and officials said they might not be able to afford it.

“We’re very much in the beginning stage of this,” Albany Public Libraries Exec. Dir. Scott Jarzombek said.

On Tuesday, Jarzombek and others on his staff discussed the matter at a public meeting.

“Nobody wants to close a library,” he said. “That’s not what the library director or the board wants to do.”

Jarzombek said the North Albany location is small and doesn’t get as much use as the others. But even if it is shut down, he said they will still have resources available.

“If we can’t do it by having a building in the community, we do it by outreach,” he said.

Meanwhile, Henry’s mom, Hanna, said she worries about where her son will go after school if the library closes, especially during the hours she’s still at work.

“With this being closed, where are the kids going to go?” she wondered. “It’s sad. It’s very sad that they are closing this down. I would like them to reconsider.”

The potential closure of the library is still only in the discussion stages. More meetings are scheduled and public input is encouraged.

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