Lunch at the Library this Summer!

Librarian Katy welcomes kids with a free healthy lunch!

Did you know about the Lunch at the Library program during the summer? This program is a continuation of the free/reduced cost lunch program provided in schools during the regular school year. It provides free lunches to anyone 18 and under, three days per week in July and August.

In 2019, thanks to donations from our community, the Foundation provided the El Cerrito Library a new refrigerator to store lunch meals.

In normal times, the meal is served inside the library, but because of the “Front Door Service” restrictions at all CCC libraries this summer, the EC library’s Lunch at the Library is being held as an outdoor drive through/pick-up event in the parking lot behind the library. The foundation lent the library staff their canopy (normally used with their booth) to shade the food handed out.

If you know of a kid who could benefit from this program, pass on the word! See attached flyer for dates and times of the lunches for this summer of 2020.

Latest from Special City Council Budget Study Session

Thank You, El Cerrito Library Supporters!

On Tuesday afternoon, June 9, the El Cerrito City Council held a Special City Council Budget Study Session.

During this study session, the Council heard and discussed recommendations for programs and services that could be reduced based on previously determined strategic priorities. Reducing El Cerrito Library operating hours from 46 to 35, the minimum hours provided by the County, was one of the reductions recommended.

The City Council also heard Public comment from 103 residents, most all from El Cerrito, but a few from Richmond Annex and Kensington. 49 of these comments requested that library hours not be cut, and that El Cerrito continue funding 11 additional hours so our library will remain open 46 hours, six days a week. (Last month Contra Costa County decided to close all branch libraries on Sundays.)

At the end of the study session, the city council members each spent about 5 minutes providing guidance to city staff and the consultant about the matters presented and to assist staff and the consultants in preparing recommendations for the June 16 council meeting.  Four of the five members (Mayor Lyman, Mayor Pro Tem Fadelli, and Councilmembers Pardue-Okimoto and Quinto all included as part of their statements a statement to the effect that cutting library hours should no longer be considered.

The El Cerrito Library Foundation applauds and thanks each and everyone of you 49 supporters who took the time to make your voices heard. It’s broad based support like this that ensures all of the Councilmembers know that we care, and that we are paying attention to what they are saying and doing.

To receive notices from the City of any City Council meetings, budget discussions, or other City activities please sign up for the notices <http://el-cerrito.org/list.aspx>. FYI, the next budget discussion will be during the City Council meeting on Tuesday, Jun 16, 2020. The meeting agenda and packet <http://el-cerrito.org/482/Council-Meeting-Videos-Materials?AMID=42> will be available some time Thursday afternoon, June 11.

Al Miller, President, El Cerrito Library Foundation

Thank you for your support – City Council to Maintain Extra Hours for our Library!

At an unusual Saturday morning meeting on April 25, 2020, held to discuss the severe financial crisis facing the city, aided by strong supporting Public Comments from 30-plus Library users, the El Cerrito City Council unanimously voted to continue funding extra hours for our library. The reason for eleven hours, rather than fifteen, is that the County intends to close all branch libraries on Sunday, so the four existing hours on Sunday were not considered.

Their unanimous vote shows the Council understands how important the library is to our community.  Libraries everywhere are “a symbol of the vital connection between knowledge and democracy.”  Our library serves no less a vital function for us in El Cerrito.

The Council’s funding of these eleven additional hours, and the County’s plan to close all branches on Sunday, means the El Cerrito Library will be open 46 hours/six days per week when normal library operation returns.

The tentative  library hours are the same as before except for Sunday:

Monday & Tuesday        – 12:00 to 8:00

Wednesday & Thursday – 10:00 to 6:00

Friday & Saturday          – 10:00 to 5:00

Sunday                           — Closed

Thank you for you timely show of support for our library.

Al Miller
ECLF President