The Friends of the Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library is a volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and enhancing the resources of Watertown's historic Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library. Founded in 1954, our group was established so members of the community could play an active role in supporting the library.
Today, the Friends of the Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library organizes fundraising events, including our popular annual book sale. Proceeds from events and other fundraising activities provide gifts and endowments to the library, helping to make possible critical improvements and to enhance offerings for patrons. To learn more about our library and its rich history, click here to visit its official site.
The current officers and directors of the Friends of the Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library include:
President: Kyle Ramey
Vice President: Mary Miles
Treasurer: Ron Riordan
Secretary: Carol Smith
Assistant Treasurer: Ronald Roberts
Trustee Board Liaison:
Our Recent Achievements
Raising over $10,000 annually to purchase fiction books for patrons
Hosted "Hidden in Plain Sight: An Evening of the Art of the Flower Memorial Library" and raised $12,000 for a new children's floor
Purchasing specialized computer for children's use
Sponsoring community movies
Supplying Christmas decor and summer flowers library exterior
Underwrote a presentation by children's author Eric Litwin
Purchased a television for the criculation desk area and a baby changing table for the restroom
Funded the purchase of a digital film scanner
School Ballot Referendum FAQ
What is a “School Ballot Referendum”?
Requesting funds directly from school district taxpayers by asking them to vote on a resolution placed on the annual school district ballot is the definition of a “school ballot referendum” and is becoming one of the most popular funding avenues in today’s public libraries.
What is the cost to the school district taxpayer for this funding?
School district taxpayers pay an amount based on their assessed property value, just like they do for school taxes. For 2020-2021, the cost is less than $4.75 per $100,000 assessed value of real property.
Why do libraries request funding through the school district ballot?
The law provides a means for public and association libraries that serve the entire community to access voters in the community in order to levy taxes and to use tax collection mechanisms. (Ed. Law §§ 256, 259, 255).
Can the school district charge for collecting the library funds from the district taxpayers?
Does the library funding appear as part of the school district budget funds?
No. Library funds appear as separate lines on the ballot. (Ed. Law, §259)
Is a new budget vote required each year?
No. Once the proposition has been accepted by the voters of the district, it is “considered an annual appropriation until changed by further vote.” (Ed. Law, §259)
Why does Flower Library need additional funds?
In 2019, Flower Memorial Library checked out more than 130,000 items, and programs and services offered by the library were used more than 82,500 times. Sadly, due to city budget constraints, the library will receive just $10,000 for library materials in the next fiscal year (an 85% reduction for materials from just 10 years ago). That amount will cover the cost of less than 400 new materials. In order to continue serving everyone in the community, additional funds are critical.
How will the money be used by the library?
100% of the money received from the school ballot initiative will go towards fiction and non-fiction books, e-books, children’s books, teen books, e-magazines, and other vital materials. No money from the school ballot will be used for salaries, building maintenance or other services.
How can you help?
To support Flower Memorial Library, vote YES for Proposition 1 on the official school ballot you will receive in the mail. As taxpayers in the Watertown City School district, your YES vote will help secure these funds that will benefit the entire community.
"All I have learned, I have learned from books."