On Tuesday, April 8, the residents of Port Washington will have the opportunity to get an incredible bargain. For a very small portion of our overall taxes (less than one-twentieth of our total tax bill) and a smaller, proportional increase than we voted for last year, we can continue to enjoy the free services of a first-class, nationally-known library. And the high value of our houses will continue to reflect the high value of the services we receive from our library and other local institutions.

Of course, thousands of books are there for us to browse, reserve from home by either telephone or computer, take out and even buy for 50 cents from the discard rack. Dozens of magazines are available to read and take out. But our library goes far beyond reading matter. It has one of the best, if not the best, collection of movies on cassettes and DVDs on Long Island. It has books to listen to on audiocassettes and CDs. It has black-and-white and color copiers. It has Internet-accessible computers complete with someone to help users. It has computers for kids. It holds classes in English as a Second Language. All for free or for pennies.

I never have to leave Port Washington for entertainment of the highest quality. At the library I can hear concerts with top-flight musicians - rock, folk and classical. I can see creative work - in constantly changing exhibits of original art and photos. I can have more of the best minds of our time. Again, all for free.

And best of all, the library has a great staff of people who are always ready, able and willing to help with virtually any question or request. So, I urge all in our community to go to the library on April 8 and vote YES for the budget. And who knows what special treats you'll pick up once you're there!

Sally Olds

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