Bridgeport’s heralded public library system is facing a major haircut in Mayor Joe Ganim’s proposed spending plan for the budget year starting July 1. If you’re a fan of library branches and education spending, the City Council’s Budget and Appropriations Committee will conduct public hearings on the budget this week, first on Tuesday for the library and Board of Education and then on Thursday for the general budget. Both hearings will start at 6 p.m. in City Council Chambers.
The Library Board requested $7 million. Ganim’s spending proposal has plugged in $5.8 million. The library’s current year budget that ends June 30 is $6.8 million. So the reduction, if it holds, is significant. See proposed library budget here.
Depending on what happens at the state level, the budget year starting July 1 with the implementation of revaluation of taxable property could be fugly. Governor Dan Malloy has proposed a whole bunch of cuts to municipalities in order to close a $1 billion projected state budget deficit. Ganim is trying to rally the state legislature to restore Malloy’s cuts that would require a combination of dramatic spending reductions and higher taxes for July 1. Ganim’s proposed budget relies heavily on state financial support.
Library supporters assert Ganim’s budget would cripple branches at a time major infrastructure improvements are on the horizon.