The Somerset Public Library’s dedicated board of directors, staff and nearly 50 volunteers have successfully raised $3.16 million to pay for the new library. The library is thrilled to now switch focus from raising funds to all the opportunities the new building brings.
The remaining loan balance was paid two years early thanks to a generous December 2021 donation from the Fred C. and Katharine B. Andersen Foundation. Community supporters contributed an astounding 77% of the funds for the building project and just 0.2% was funded by taxpayer dollars.
Other substantial benefactors of the project are the Hugh J. Andersen Foundation, RCU Foundation, Otto Bremer Foundation, SMC Ltd., FNC Bank, the Town of Somerset, The Friends of Somerset Public Library and an anonymous $1 million gift.
The new library has two private study rooms, six public computer stations, a quiet reading room with a fireplace, large group meeting spaces with after-hours access, a children’s area connected to an outdoor green space, a young adult area and a new history room dedicated to the preservation of Somerset’s history.
All of the 12,540 square feet are ADA compliant.
The library board’s next initiative is to recognize the many generous individuals and organizations that donated to the building project. Those that contributed $1,000 or more will have the option to add their name or honor someone special on a donor recognition wall.
However, the donations need to be received by June 1. These additional donations will go towards furnishings for the new library and growing library services.