A Message from the City Librarian

The Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library is a community based organization that serves the City of Monterey Park and surrounding communities in the San Gabriel Valley.  The mission of the library is to meet the cultural, educational, and informational needs of the residents of the City of Monterey Park by providing free and open access to its resources and services.  

The Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library operates under the provisions of Chapter 2.80 of the Monterey Park Municipal Code and serves the residents, city employees and the business community of the City of Monterey Park and surrounding communities.

The primary sources of revenue for the library are: 5.3% contributions from the City's General Fund, the Library Tax and various State and Federal government grants, fundraising efforts from the Monterey Park Library Foundation and Friends of the Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library as well as small and large donations from corporate sponsors, and key stakeholders in and outside the community such as the Scudder Foundation and Asian American Economic Development Enterprises. Overall, the library had a $2.7 million budget for the 2014/15 fiscal year that included funding from all these resources. Additionally, this past year, staff asserted themselves in grant applications bringing in an additional $75,705 in grant revenues to create and develop new resources for use by our patrons and community. Cumulative revenues were used to help with the operations of the library, fund salaries and benefits of full time employees and provide for part time staffing, support operational expenses, comply with a debt payment, and expand the library's collection. Altogether, these funding sources helped significantly to improve the delivery of diversified library services that enhanced the lives of people around the community by providing educational, knowledgeable and entertaining information through reading, visual, audio, learning and interactive cultural programs and materials.  

Over the past year, it was determined the library had gained a substantial surplus to purchase new computers for public and staff use. A total of 36 new computers were purchased with additional licensing rights, along with new iPads for both children and adult use, Apple TVs for remote connectivity, Mac computers and Mac iBooks for use in promotional publications and curriculum assessments, new projectors for use with presentations and educational curriculum and some needed furniture for display purposes. In the Circulation division, wireless keyboards were purchased for use in aiding library patrons registering for library cards and updating library card information. An updated computer and touch screen monitor for the public check out machine were also purchased to allow easier check out of library materials.

With 53,876 active library card holders and 329,535 patrons who visited the Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library, the library remained a centralized hub in the community.  Emphasis on diversity in programming expanded this past year to include a segment never presented before – Children’s books authors were enlisted to speak to young readers and future writers.  The Free Legal Clinic offered monthly to our patrons opened a new avenue of communication between our patrons and their personal needs.  Patrons have become familiar with the comprehensive resources offered at their library.

City Librarian Goals
Five targeted areas were addressed as the City Librarian’s Goals for the 2014/15 Fiscal Year:

1. Fuel the City of Monterey Park’s Passion for Reading, Personal Growth and Learning
A. Build communities around books, eBooks, and mobile devices used for reading and      learning
B. Strengthen the Library’s contribution to the education of Monterey     park, children   and youth via school collaboration with faculty
C. Be Monterey Park’s source for high-quality free instruction and     programs to support school curriculum and personal growth
D. Integrate learning into daily life

2. Expand Monterey Park’s Access to Information, Ideas and Stories
A. Lead the community in providing access to digital material
B. Develop relevant and inspiring collections that meet Monterey     Park’s evolving needs and expectations
C. Drive new models for improving information access and delivery

3. Empower Monterey Park’s Distinctive Communities and Vibrant    Neighborhoods
A. Bring resources to where people are
B. Establish the Library as a civic focal point and resource hub for the    communities in Monterey Park
C. Adapt spaces and services to support Monterey Park’s vibrant neighborhoods onsite and offsite.

4. Build Partnerships to Make a Difference in People’s Lives
A. Organize a systematic approach to partnering that best leverages Library and partner resources
B. Create alliances with government agencies and community groups to benefit Monterey park residents through library resources

5. Foster an Organizational Culture of Innovation
A. Build Library staff and institutional capacity to innovate
B. Use rigorous analysis to provide a positive user experience
C. Manage change with flexibility
D. Communicate and celebrate progress

Collaborations with staff determined the planning and organization of community based needs.  Focus on how programs such as cultural exhibits, educational classes, workshops, presentations, author visits, professional presenters and nonprofit partnerships would benefit community needs became the tool in planning to meet these needs. Furthermore, statistics on program attendance also determined a direction in how the community valued these programs as relevant.  Based on these outcomes, the goals were met with the following accomplishments.

 Fuel the City of Monterey Park Passion for Reading, Personal Growth and Learning
• Bilingual Storytimes were added
• Mandarin classes for children expanded
• Reading Rockets opened additional sessions to meet the needs of   elementary children
• School Storytimes visits were conducted at all schools
• New collection added content on Leadership and Organizational   Skills
• iPads and new Apple TVs for remote access were purchased
•Jane Price Donation afforded additions to the adult collection

Expand Monterey Park’s Access to Information, Ideas, and Stories
• Enhanced book collections with Ethnic Studies, Spanish and Chinese and Social Sciences
• Increased Wi-Fi access across all floors of library
• Increased eBooks, user friendly databases (Gale Power Search,   Children’s Tumblebooks)
• Added self-directed Crafts and Reading areas for children for independent reading
• Increased Author Visits in Children’s and Adult’s divisions
    
Empower Monterey Park’s Distinctive Communities and Vibrant Neighborhoods
• Made more accessible library materials and resources to schools   and activity centers
• Presented Local Authors
    
Build Partnerships to Make a Difference in People’s Lives
• Claremont College School of Pitzer’s - Civic Involvement with   Literacy
• AAEDE (Asian American Economic Development Enterprise) - Reading Rockets
• Rotary Club - Children’s Mandarin Classes
• John Scudder / Historical Society - Laura Scudder Exhibit
• Free Legal Clinic – APABA (Asian Pacific American Bar Association)

Foster an Organizational Culture of Innovation
• Ready Reader App with bilingual nursery rhymes
• Teacher in a Tablet iPads for check out with loaded literacy    curriculum
• Distance Learning – Reading Horizons
• Remote access for classroom learning with Apple TVs connectivity
• Pentel International Exhibit
• First Library to Exhibit Flying Tigers
• New Quarterly Program Brochure

Conclusion
Creative interchange with staff was the key element in securing the successes the library gained this past fiscal year.  During the past year, it was evident there was creative integration of programs that offered continual transformation to the community.  Authentic interaction with staff, volunteers and community stakeholders also created the cascading effect of relevant changes in the library organizations of program delivery.  With the addition of a quarterly brochure celebrating programs that meet the community needs, the library attained a permanent status as the information hub for the community of Monterey Park.

Norma Arvizu, M.Ed
City Librarian