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Funding to be sought for improvements at Freehold Public Library

FREEHOLD – Supporters of the Freehold Public Library, East Main Street, Freehold Borough, are seeking funding from the state to complete planned improvements to the building.

Members of the Borough Council have authorized a contract not to exceed $11,000 with CGP&H for grant writing, counseling and consulting services related to the New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act.

According to a resolution, CGP&H will write the borough’s New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act grant for 2020. Council members said they believe awarding the contract will permit the borough to file an accurate, timely and competitive grant application.

Council members have also authorized a $12,800 contract with DMR Architects for grant application services related to the Freehold Public Library. The firm will provide services for the preparation of a comprehensive, coordinated grant application to pursue matching grant funds from the New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act.

On March 12, Kathy Mulholland, library director, said the Freehold Public Library Board of Trustees, under the leadership of Jane Kaye, is working to complete upgrades at the library and is seeking funding from the bond act.

The planned improvements include making the library accessible to individuals who use a wheelchair; installing a lift that would provide access to both levels of the building; increasing public space in the building by reclaiming storage space; adding restrooms that would comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act; and installing a new roof and new building systems, Mulholland said.

According to the state, the New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act authorizes the issuance of $125 million in state general obligation bonds to provide grants for the construction, reconstruction, development, extension, improvement and furnishing of public libraries in New Jersey.

The Freehold Public Library is not a member of the Monmouth County Library System. The library is supported solely by the municipality.

In other recent business, council members passed a resolution stating their support for an application to be filed by the Freehold Racing Association for a sports wagering license and a sports wagering lounge at Freehold Raceway, Park Avenue.

According to the resolution, the Freehold Racing Association will submit an application for a sports wagering license so it may operate a sports wagering pool at Freehold Raceway. A preliminary concept plan for a sports wagering lounge at the harness racing track has been developed.

Council members said they believe the addition of a sports wagering lounge will enhance the economic viability of Freehold Raceway’s operation and provide an additional form of entertainment to the public.

News Transcript Managing Editor Mark Rosman contributed to this article.

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