Plattekill Library marks 50th anniversary

By Mark Reynolds
Posted 11/22/23

This year the Plattekill Library celebrates 50 years of service to the community. Recently, State Senator Michelle Hinchey presented the library with a Proclamation on behalf of ‘the Great …

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Plattekill Library marks 50th anniversary

This year the Plattekill Library celebrates 50 years of service to the community. Recently, State Senator Michelle Hinchey presented the library with a Proclamation on behalf of ‘the Great State of New York.’
The Proclamation congratulates the Library on their Golden Anniversary, stating they have, “evolved with the times, embracing technology and innovation to ensure that it remains a relevant and vital resource for the community, offering digital resources, computer access and a range of services that meet the needs of a changing world. The Library staff, volunteers and supporters have played an invaluable role in its success, demonstrating unwavering dedication to the principles of literacy, education and community engagement that has defined the Plattekill Public Library for half a century.”
Sen. Hinchey said it is important to, “mark this incredible milestone because a library is the center and heart of a community. The proclamation is from my office and New York State for 50 glorious years.”  
NYS Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson has also been supportive of the efforts to bring a new library to the town of Plattekill and was on hand to acknowledge their achievement.
Will Farrell, who is President of the Board of Trustees of the Library, has been working a long time to add a new wing to the current building. The trustees have hired architect Andrew C. Miller as a consultant.
“We have our first architectural rendering and we want to start construction next year,” he said.
Farrell said they have some funding through the Mid Hudson Library System [MHLS] but eventually they will have to bond for a majority of the cost of the project.
“I will be reaching out to everybody and I’m right upfront, it’s going to cost, but do we wait another five years so it will cost that much more? Let’s start making plans and if we get the money, we build it, if we don’t then we don’t.” He said the trustees also have a grant writer who has been donating her time.
Farrell said the proposed new library wing will be abut 4,000 sq/ft, “so I would say ours will cost somewhere between $2 million to $3 million.” He said concrete numbers will come in after they formally put the project out to bid.
Farrell feels good that they are incorporating the old building into the new plans, calling it, “very historical for this town and we want to maintain that.” It was built in 1927 as a two room school house, which lasted until 1972 and it was converted into a reading center the next year and eventually into the town’s library.  
Hinchey said her office is compiling a list of possible grants and green energy companies that Plattekill may be able to tap into to help defray or lower some of the construction costs.
“There is so much money out there for geothermal, heat pumps and [energy efficient] windows and all of that stuff, especially for libraries” she said. “When you go out for grants let us know because we can write letters of support.”
Hinchey said, “What is important to know about our funding is it’s all reimbursable. I don’t have access to straight grants that are just grants, and any kind of money that I can give you is reimbursable, you spend the money first and then you get it back.”  
Farrell said, “I gotta believe that if we go to the citizens and tell them we can build a nice new library for this town and it’s going to cost you $50 more a year, it’s a no-brainer. We’re doing it for the people of the town and feel this is a good time to expand.”