Rose Memorial Library takes its role as a steward of the Town of Stony Point’s trust and financial investment very seriously. Some stories are going around about the potential cost of buying, renovating, and operating the former Stony Point school house at 117 W Main Street as the new library and center for gathering, learning and creating for town residents. The Library Board is interested in focusing on the facts:
● Rose Memorial Library has entered into a contingency contract to purchase 117 W Main St. on June 4, 2022 at a price of $1.425 million, contingent upon funding approval by the voters of Stony Point on the November ballot.
● That $1.425 million purchase price is the only concrete figure that is currently decided. All other figures and the annual budget will be determined, broken down for transparency, and shared widely, by the beginning of July. That amount will be legally locked-in as soon as the petition for signatures to get the referendum on the ballot is released.
● The actual cost to renovate the building is currently being determined by a professional estimator. However, two separate architecture/engineering teams with hundreds of library projects under their belts gave rough estimates of $8 million dollars, for everything from construction to parking lot to landscaping to furniture, after touring the building and property.
● Rose Memorial Library will not move forward on a construction project that was going to cost more than $8 million. It is neither a reasonable nor responsible ask of Stony Pointers and we know that.
● The amount requested for the project on the November ballot will include operating costs of the building. The operational costs are not yet determined.
● Rose Memorial Library is looking into NY State Library Construction grants, SAM facilities grants, sustainable energy grants, historic preservation grants, and private donations to offset as much of the cost as possible.
● This proposal is going directly through the Town of Stony Point. School taxes will not be impacted by this project whatsoever.
● Rose Memorial Library is not only the smallest library in Rockland County, but has the lowest funding, per capita, in the county. This town is being underserved by our current building and operations.
The Board of the Rose Memorial Library is concerned by recent statements by Supervisor Jim Monaghan that the project will cost $15 million. None of the figures Supervisor Monaghan cited in his recent post on social media are accurate or verified. We are troubled by any insinuation that the library project would somehow negatively impact schools or public safety. Libraries are an asset to a community, not a liability. Expanded library services and programming, updated public gathering spaces, and the restoration of a prominent historic building in the center of town will have a positive impact on our community. Rose Memorial Library is currently at capacity for many of our programs and are actively turning people away because we do not have the space to serve more residents of Stony Point. The demand is there, and we are trying to meet it.