Lincoln and Pelham, ON – The Lincoln and Pelham Public Library Boards are pleased to announce that they have begun to explore the possibility of merging the two library systems. In the spirit of creating efficiencies and streamlining administrative functions and expenditures, this potential merger would provide enhanced delivery of library services for our two communities and dedicate more resources to programs and materials.
The Lincoln and Pelham public libraries are a natural fit for sharing services, as the two are original members of the Libraries in Niagara Cooperative (LiNC). With a long history of partnership and working together for the betterment of our communities, our two Library Boards serve communities that are similar, and our staff have comparable work cultures and top-notch customer service styles.
As members of LiNC, they already share an integrated library catalogue system, which removes one of the most costly and complicated steps for sharing collections and a potential hurdle for merger.
A significant benefit of combining the administration of two smaller public libraries is the opportunity to increase buying power and decrease duplication. For example, the amalgamated public library would have one CEO – currently, Pelham and Lincoln boards each have their own CEO – resulting in reduced spending on administrative expenditures with the savings able to go back to serving the community.
“Improving library services for the Pelham community is an ongoing priority for the Pelham Public
Library Board,” said Nicole Nolan, Pelham Public Library Board Chair. “A partnership between the
Lincoln and Pelham libraries is an effective way to make more efficient use of funds, increase access
to library resources, and increase services for our community members.”
“Lincoln Public Library looks forward to working with our Pelham partners to create a future vision for public library services that would provide enhanced benefits to both our communities,” said Donna Burton, Chair of the Lincoln Public Library Board.
The first step of sharing services is establishing an agreement between both municipalities that outlines board composition and financial commitments. Once this step is completed, the boards will continue to work together to iron out details and seek community feedback as they work toward combining policies and staff into one organization.