MONROE — In addition to the four other important decisions on the back of the ballot on Tuesday, Nov. 7, Proposition 5 is a vote about funding support for the Monroe Free Library.

Historically, the Monroe Free Library has received support through the ballot vote in order to sustain and fortify essential services.

But library officials said the previous two years have bucked the normal trend. Last year, the library received no funding increase. The year before that, the library received less than half of what it normally requests.

Costs increase everywhere, every year, and Monroe Free Library’s ability to provide the best possible services, technology, and programming is not immune to such increases.

To help fix the two-year shortfall, the library is requesting a budget increase of $45,000.

Access to library services is available for all Monroe Residents. Young children and their guardians can freely utilize the robust children’s collection and inclusive programming - including sign language classes and sensory-friendly story times.

Teenagers can learn to code.

Adults and seniors can attend educational lectures, book discussions, and art programs.

The library also plays an important role in supporting democracy, which presupposes an informed citizenry. The library facilitates access to both traditional and digital information.

The library offers 15 public computers to meet this goal, which need to be maintained, upgraded, and replaced as needed to stay efficient and current.

The library also offers at-home access to world-class databases, including the award winning Rosetta Stone language learning software.

The library’s executive director Marilyn McIntosh emphasizes how important this funding is to keep the library operating at the high standards the community expects.

“The cost of everything continues to rise, and if we don’t keep up, we fall behind," she said. " The library is a reflection of the community it serves, and if the institution is diminished then the town is diminished as well.”

Election day is Tuesday, November 7th. You can find your polling place online by visiting https://voterlookup.elections.state.ny.us. Remember to flip the ballot.