A great deal of preparation and community outreach have been conducted during the last eight years. Information on the entire process is available to the public.
In 2013, the Trustees requested $7,500 in the form of a Warrant Article and received town support in the form of a yes vote. The funds were intended to hire a specialist library consultant for assistance. The Trustees wanted to understand how the community felt the library could best serve our residents. They intended to build a strategic plan with measurable goals.
With the consultant’s help, the Trustees organized focus groups of patrons, residents, community leaders, and educational leaders. The consultant provided a full report of findings. The Trustees created a strategic visioning plan with a list of measurable goals. By 2015, all targets were completed except for a much-needed expansion.
The library requested $50,000 in the form of a Warrant Article and again received town support. These funds were used to engage architectural discussions, solicit proposals, and eventually select the architectural and construction management firm, Lavallee | Brensinger.
Library Trustee and resident architect Patricia Sherman worked with the Library Director to collect measurements and data to support initial planning stages. Four public meetings were held to gather, consider, and incorporate community input.
The Trustees, prudent with the funding received, finished the architectural planning and schematic drawings under budget, returning more than 20% of the approved warrant article funding back to the Town. As was done with the 1998 expansion, the Trustees decided to support the tax base by fundraising some of the anticipated construction costs. The Newbury Public Library Foundation of NH, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization was established for the capital campaign funding.
Library Trustee Regina Cockerill was appointed Chair of the Foundation, leading the administrative effort on fundraising. The Capital Campaign fundraising began with the intention of asking voters to support a Warrant Article in March 2020 for the architectural designs.
In 2020, Jeanne Palleiko was appointed the new chair of the Foundation, taking over from Regina Cockerill. In March of 2020, a warrant article passed for $200,000 to pay for full architectural designs for the library expansion project.
Throughout 2020, the Foundation continued to fundraise, with a goal of $500,000 to help reduce the tax burden on residents. By May of 2021, the Foundation had raised more than $500,000 in donations and pledges for the Capital Campaign, and they are committed to continuing their fundraising efforts into 2022.
During the 2021 Newbury Town Meeting, Trustees presented a warrant article for expansion. The warrant article required a 60% majority vote to pass, and the measure lost by six votes. The Foundation and Trustees are hopeful that the warrant article will pass at the 2022 Town Meeting.