Assembly’s Brooklyn Delegation Plays Santa For BPL Tech Upgrades


The Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) system, suddenly flush with cash after the $52 million sale of their Cadman Plaza Branch and the pending sale of their Sunset Park branch, received another $3 million windfall today – this time from the state Assembly’s Brooklyn delegation to pay for technology upgrades.

The money will pay for televisions, video game consoles, Apple and Microsoft laptops, Lego Robotics and Little Bits kits and portable sound systems at every branch throughout the borough.

Assemblyman Joe Lentol
Assemblyman Joe Lentol

“While it is true that nothing will ever replace the value of a good book, we must also make sure that our libraries keep up with the times in our ever-changing technological world,” said Assemblymember Joe Lentol (Greenpoint, Williamsburg), Chair of the Assembly’s Brooklyn delegation .

The delivery of the new technology is particularly timely given that BPL, with increased funding from the City, has expanded its STEM programming and assigned at least one technology resource specialist to every branch.

“Thanks to the Assembly’s investment in Brooklyn Public Library, our librarians will be able to host more technology programs for their patrons, and thousands of Brooklynites will have free use of equipment to which they might not have access at home or in school,” said Brooklyn Public Library President and CEO Linda E. Johnson.

Among the assembly members who hailed the state allocation included James Brennan (Park Slope, Windsor Terrace, Kensington, Ditmas Park), Steven  Cymbrowitz (Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach), Felix W. Ortiz (Red Hook, Sunset Park), Helene Weinstein (Flatlands, Flatbush, Sheepshead Bay) and Annette Robinson (Bedford-Stuyvesant, Norther Crown Heights). 

Assemblywoman Latrice Walker
Assemblywoman Latrice Walker

But for some assembly members, such as Brownsville Assemblywoman Latrice Walker, the upgrades are crucial to the advancement of her constituents.

“The 55th Assembly district is a broadband desert. Most of our residents are only able to receive internet access through their cellphones,” said Walker. “This improvement to our local public libraries allows our residents the same ease of access to faster broadband service, and brand-new, state-of-the-art equipment made available to other Brooklyn residents.”