NYPL Withdraws Salary Offer; City Seeks Givebacks

Article excerpt

Salary talks between New York Public Library and the librarians' union have broken down after administrators withdrew a proposal that would have raised salaries of current librarians by 15%. The increase, aimed at addressing inadequate salaries that have led to a shortage of personnel in the city's library systems (AL, Feb., p. 14), was agreed to by NYPL and the union in August, Local 1930 President Ray Markey told American Libraries.

The salary increase in the proposal would have been paid for by cutting 60 to 70 of some 550 librarian positions at NYPL and by a $600,000 reduction in the book budget, explained Michael Zavelle, the library's senior vice president for administration, finance, and business affairs. However, when city officials reviewed the proposal they wanted productivity gains to be part of the package, and they told the library to demand givebacks in the form of a two-and-a-half-hour increase in librarians' 35-hour workweek. In addition, positions that are currently vacant would be eliminated. …