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The Hunt is looking for new partnerships

Hunt Library

Deputy City Manager Daisy Perez presented to the city council on June 6 the City of Fullerton’s proposal to reopen the Hunt Library.

The city’s proposal is a two-year plan to operate the hunt library as a library, Special Event Center, and community space. The library operations would be available four to five days a week, and community programs would be scheduled on weekends and evenings when the facility is not being used as a private Event Center. Specifically for the library operations, we propose shifting one of the senior librarians from the main library to the Hunt with additional support from tech and two part-time library pages.

Proposed library programs include: story time, baby and toddler, stay and play between book club author events, and the potential partnership with our local elementary schools.

The city seeks support from the Public Library Foundation to cover the initial one-time startup cost of computer programming collection development and small equipment. This would lead to a net cost for library services in the first year of about $222,000.

The ad hoc committee considered arts and culture programming critical to meeting community needs. The Hunt could facilitate community and cultural growth by working with groups like the Muckenthaler Cultural Center. Staff would coordinate with existing providers to offer community programs. A potential partnership has emerged with the Muckenthaler to provide a specialized weekly concert series to unite people to celebrate and enjoy live music at the Hunt. Staff determined that the grant funding from the state could fund the city class costs and the partnerships for a weekly concert. However, any art exhibit would generate an additional cost beyond the state grant resulting in a net cost of $5000 to the city annually. The Parks and Recreation department would need one full-time event specialist and six part-time event coverage employees. This is the same structure currently at the Community Center with the bookings of weddings and similar events.

Staff anticipates that renting the space would achieve approximately 90% cost recovery for the proposed use of the private event rentals and lead to a net cost of $22,380 for the first year of operation. The revised city proposal provides cost-reducing alternatives such as staff repurposing from the existing library grants and other avenues which minimize general fund dependence. Several of the cost included in this proposal have been offset from various sources.

This proposal requires $195,000 for year one and $260,000 in year two net additional funding to operate the Hunt branch for two years. Staff recommends the following actions to approve the two-year bridge plan to operate the Hunt as a city-run facility with arts and culture programming seven days a week, to authorize the city manager to enter into an administer agreements with the city and various community groups to provide programming, to authorize the appropriation of $505,137 in expenditures and $679,561 in revenue for the next fiscal year, and to approve the additional one time one full-time event specialist 6,240 non-regular hours for the Parks and Recreation department, one full-time library technical assistant, and 1,920 non-regular hours for the library part-time positions for next fiscal year.

Councilmember Dunlap said, “I experienced this the other weekend because we couldn’t bring the kids to the library on Sunday; they were closed, but they’re talking about a full-time library here? I just wanted to understand if the Hunt going to be open full time, but our library here is not?

Perez said, “We would not reduce any existing library programs or hours at the main library. We would add library services four to five days a week at the Hunt.”

Public comment:

Molly McClanahan, Ad Hoc Committee member, said that she, along with the rest of the Ad Hoc Committee, supports the two-year Bridge Plan.

Rubina Chaudry, Founder and President of Olive Community Services and long-time resident said, “I also support the bridge program. I want to thank Mr. Levitt and Miss Perez for allowing Olive to share our concept. Today is Olive’s 7th birthday, and in the seven years we’ve served over 12,000 seniors, their families, and the community, we are looking forward to the Hunt Library being in service. We would be happy to see if we could bring some multicultural programming.”

Jane Rands, Ernie Kelsey, ZJ Han, Curtis Gamble, Jane Reifer, and Maureen Milton also support the Bridge plan.

It was passed unanimously.

Community survey for the Hunt Library

The City of Fullerton is in the process of revitalizing the historic Hunt Library property. Please complete the survey below to help us design the types of programs and activities that you would like to see at the Hunt. Here is the link to the community survey for the Hunt Library: https://arcg.is/iKPri