Tag Archives: Queens Library

Queens president: Trustees must nix money-flush library head’s $2M exit deal

“Queens Borough President Melinda Katz is demanding that trustees of the Queens Library rein in their out-of-control chief executive, Thomas Galante, and eliminate a secret $2 million golden parachute in his employment contract. “Faith must be restored in our library system,” Katz wrote Tuesday in a stinging letter to the 19 trustees, urging them to “act swiftly … to restore the trust that has been lost” after embarrassing revelations about library spending. The Daily News reported earlier this month that Galante received a whopping $392,000 salary in 2013, plus a sports car, to run the borough’s taxpayer-funded library system. And The News was first to report that he spent nearly $140,000 on renovations to his executive offices — including a $26,000 private smoking deck.” (via NY Daily News)

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Queens Library Crowdsources for Borough History Project

“The Queens Library is doing its part to keep the borough from flushing its history away. In partnership with Historypin, an online archive, the library has developed “Queens: Neighborhood Stories,” an interactive crowdsourcing initiative that uses photos, videos and other media to illuminate the everyday lives of people who have lived in the most culturally diverse county in the United States. Residents can log onto Historypin and upload their historic material, which is then pinned to an online map where users can browse it by date and location. The images can even be overlaid with modern Google street view images, to get a true picture of the past.” (via The New York Observer)

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Thomas Galante, Queens Library CEO, calls $392,000 pay ‘average’

“The head of the Queens Library defended his six-figure salary Monday — insisting his lucrative pay and perks were “average” compensation in the nonprofit world.Thomas Galante said there was nothing improper about his $391,594 salary, or the $140,000 he spent last year to renovate his offices.But his ample pay package, first reported in the Daily News, shocked and surprised library employees, who have been without a raise since 2008.” (via NY Daily News)

See also, Queens Library president’s spendthrift ways eyed by New York City controller

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Queens Library president gets $390G salary, luxe office makeover while shedding 130 jobs

“For a classic study of the “Tale of Two Cities,” Mayor de Blasio should visit the Queens Central Library. Patrons of that dilapidated two-story building on Merrick Blvd. in Jamaica have faced years of unending construction and diminished services. But that didn’t stop library President Thomas Galante from spending $140,000 last year to renovate his offices on the building’s second floor. Galante managed this after eliminating nearly 130 library jobs through layoffs and attrition over the past five years.” (via NY Daily News)

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Making the Queens Library a cool spot for curious teens

“Who knew libraries could be so cool? The new Teen Space at the Central Library in Jamaica is dotted with flat-screens, bold photo murals, a gaming room and, of course, tons of those old-fashioned hand-held curios called books. “We’re about learning but we’re about having fun and learning too,” Queens Library CEO Tom Galante said last week as he officially opened the new 6,100 square-foot center.” (via NY Daily News)

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Unionized Queens Library custodians are being replaced with lower paid workers

“Custodians at the Queens Library’s main branch say their jobs are being swept out the door. The financially strapped library has spent the past five years replacing unionized custodians with lower-paid contract workers at the Central Library in Jamaica.

Union leaders say that cash has been allocated to hire non-union administrators and give them raises, to boot, and they say that’s not right.” (via NY Daily News)

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Queens Library could face closures under suggested city budget cuts

“Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed deep cuts to city libraries in his 2014 budget that some worry could close Queens Library facilities, force layoffs and slash the number of hours facilities would be open a week. City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside), chairman of the Council’s Cultural Affairs and Libraries Committee, blasted the proposed cuts. “Our libraries cannot sustain cuts of these proposed levels at a time when they are experiencing some of the highest number of visitors in history and providing much-needed resources to the public,” he said.” (via TimesLedger)

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Long Island City library installs snack and soda vending machines

“A cash-strapped Queens library has found an unusual way to raise revenue: selling soda, chips and candy. The Queens Library recently installed two vending machines stocked with unhealthy snacks near the entrance of its Long Island City branch. But after calls from the Daily News, library President Thomas Galante reached out to Sterling Vending on Thursday and requested that more nutritious items be included. “The library always supports the healthiest eating habits and supports the health and well-being of the community,” said library spokeswoman Joanne King.”

via NY Daily News

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Queens Library to Lend Free E-Readers Loaded With Books

NBC New York – “Queens Library is lending 50 e-readers loaded with books to library-goers as part of a pilot program to test the concept. The library said it would start making the e-readers available on Thursday at its Central Library in Jamaica to people with a Queens Library card and photo ID.

The devices come pre-loaded with books in one of five themes — best-sellers, romances, mysteries, teens’ books or children’s books.”

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Libraries Speak the Mother Tongue

NYT – “The best-selling biography of Steve Jobs is flying off the shelves at libraries in Queens, which is not surprising. But in many of the borough’s 62 branches, the copies being borrowed are in Korean, Chinese or Spanish.”

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