Monday, December 10, 2007

Santa Maria Public Library

Rotary donates $50,000 to new library
Santa Maria Times: December 1, 2007

In an effort to create a top-notch literacy center at the brand new Santa Maria main public library, officials with the Santa Maria Noontime Rotary Club presented $50,000 to the city librarian.

Officials hope this initial offering will be part of a total $75,000 gift from all three Santa Maria Rotary Clubs to create the Rotary Literacy Center.

The money is earmarked for computers, equipment, furniture and supplies for the literacy center in the new library that will be run by the Central Coast Literacy Council, said City Librarian Francisco Pinneli.

Within the new 59,850-square-foot library, the Central Coast Literacy Center will have offices and access to all library resources, he said.

Allied with the Central Coast Literacy Council, the library will be able to expand its own literacy programming to serve not only native English-speaking adults but also those learning the language, Pinneli said.

"We very much appreciate that support (from the Rotary club) which will allow us to expand those services and provide more literacy programs for the community at large," Pinneli said.

Initially, the Noontime Rotary Club decided to adopt raising money for the library literacy center as the group's centennial project to celebrate the organization's 100th anniversary, said member Fred Pratt. However, eventually all three Rotary Clubs joined together with the city to create Rotary Centennial Park as a big centennial project, he said.

Since the library construction hadn't yet begun, the literacy center project was put on hold - though the noontime club continued to save money for the center that would be available when the project came online, Pratt said.

Now that the library construction is well under way, the first $50,000 was presented. The remainder is expected to be given soon by the other two clubs, Pratt said.

Library officials are trying to raise $1 million to help cover a shortfall in construction and furnishing costs for the $33-million project. So far, roughly $500,000 has been raised through various donations and fundraising events.

The fundraising effort is being spearheaded by the Santa Maria Library Board of Trustees, with help from the Friends of the Santa Maria Library, Pinnelli said.

The new library is expected to be completed in mid-2008. For more information on the project, see the city's Web site at
and click the Library Construction Update link.

To contribute to the new library call 805-925-0994.

No comments: