In this corner......Chris Collins.(Incumbent)
Collins is firmly behind a plan to spin off the Buffalo & Erie County Library from county funding by 2015.
The Republican has spent the last few months working with library officials to develop a three-year funding plan to keep the library budget steady until a special taxing district can be created.
"I'm working with the library," Collins said. "They need and want and should have a special legislative district that breaks them free of the politics of county government."
Under Collins' proposal, the county would provide the equivalent of $22.2 million in cash and services annually through 2014.
And in this corner.....Mark C. Poloncarz
.(red arrow added)
The current Erie County comptroller has fond memories of using the Lackawanna Public Library as a kid. He has used the Central Library for research and visited smaller branches.
That has led Poloncarz, a Democrat, to the conclusion that the county's public libraries need to preserve their role as research facilities Ñ while appealing to broad segments of the community as gathering places for learning and fun.
"The library is the great leveler for the masses," Poloncarz said. "It's the most public thing you have. It's free, it's open to anybody, at any age, no matter what's in your wallet."
Buffalo News launches "Bucks for Books" program. (9/4/2011)
More visits but fewer hours, staff and acquisitions. (9/4/2011)
Erie County Exec's 2012 library allocation will "necessitate major changes". (6/7/2011)
County Exec builds a surplus by pulling the rug from under the library. (4/27/2011)
Funding picture gets progressively worse. (2/26/2011)
Unhappy times continue. (1/21/2011)
Library officials ask for final decision on budget. (12/22/2010)
Additional funding for library but not for arts groups. (12/12/2010)
Legislators restore County Executive's $4,000,000 cut to library - for now. (12/2/2010)
"No more worthwhile program of service". (11/14/2010)
A bibliopocalypse @ the library. (11/6/2010)
WBEN online poll offers 3 general options for public library future. (10/31/2010)
Reimagining the library. (10/27/2010)
Budget cuts = reduced hours. (10/21/2010)
Deep cuts (again) in the works. (9/17/2010)
Editorial puts in 'a word about libraries'. (8/30/2010)
Library could lose 25% of funding. (8/19/2009)