Friends of the Library









Chelmsford Friends of the Library

FY2010 Library Funding Situation


Please read Library Funding Facts questions & answers list.


Dear Friend of the Library,


The Friends of the Library just learned that severe cuts are planned for the Library's Fiscal Year 2010 budget. This budget cut will be a larger percentage than most town department cuts. This disproportionate cut will mean that the Chelmsford Public Library is in danger of losing its State Certification.

Loss of Certification means:

  • Loss of $55,000 in State Library Aid
  • All Chelmsford residents lose borrowing privileges from all other Libraries in the state
  • Chelmsford students lose the ability to obtain materials from other towns' libraries to complete their school projects
  • Town residents no longer have access to interlibrary loans. (Chelmsford is the largest user of interlibrary loan of any town in the consortium, and processed 150,000 requests last year.)

When asked about the disproportionate cuts, town officials responded that it is the 'Library's turn' for deep cuts. This is an unacceptable penalty on residents and on our Library that serves the people of Chelmsford so efficiently, and has such a large presence in our town's culture.

We acknowledge the town is having a tough time financially, and that the Library should do its part to help with this struggle. However, we ask the town to ensure that the Library budget will meet Certification requirements.


We presented over 1100 of your letters to the Selectmen at the town information session on Wednesday, February 25. We will continue to collect letters until town meeting in April. Here's how you can join in supporting the Library:

  1. Show your opposition NOW to the disproportionate budget cut. Reply to this letter (sample wording can be found below) and please include your name and address.
  2. Numbers talk. Forward this letter to all your Chelmsford friends and neighbors.
  3. Call the Town Manager, the Finance Committee members, and Town Selectmen to tell them you want the Library's budget cuts to be limited to an amount that will allow the town to keep its State Certification.
  4. Ask your Town Representatives to call the Town Manager and Finance Committee members to express their support of the Library.

Your letters can be sent to the Friends of the Library at, or directly mailed to the Town Manager:

Paul Cohen, Town Manager
Town of Chelmsford
50 Billerica Road
Chelmsford, MA 01824

Thank you for your support of the Library.

Madeleine Needles
Chelmsford Friends of the Library

Example wording for your own letter:

To Town Manager Paul Cohen, the Chelmsford Finance Committee, and the Board of Selectmen:

I believe that the Library's mission is too important to our town to have drastic cuts made to its already small budget. Also, I am very concerned about losing my ability to use other town libraries or to borrow materials from them through interlibrary loan if the Chelmsford Library loses its State Certification. This loss of Certification will also mean that the Library will lose an additional $55,000 in state aid, making the impact of budget cuts even greater. Please restore enough of the Chelmsford Library's Budget to remedy this problem.

(Please add your name and address here.)


Please read Library Funding Facts questions & answers list.