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Construction Grants

The NYS Construction Grant Program is an annually funded competitive grant program to support facilities projects in public libraries in New York State. The grant funds are part of the NYS budget, administered through the Division of Library Development (DLD) and the public library systems to public libraries. UHLS receives an annual allotment of grant funds based on the total population of the UHLS service area (using the last completed federal Census figures). The member libraries complete and submit an application for grant funding. All projects must meet the NYS construction grant rules for eligibility to be considered for funding. The UHLS Board of Trustees is responsible for determining the award distribution among the applying libraries each year. The UHLS Board uses several tools to guide its award determination each year.

This is a matching grant program which requires the library to provide local funds to pay the balance of the total project cost. In accordance with NYS law, the maximum grant funding is set at 50% of the total project cost. However, there have been several revisions to the law to allow awards of up to 75% of the total project cost for libraries serving "economically disadvantaged communities" and awards up to 90% of the total project cost for libraries serving "economically distressed communities." UHLS has the authority to define the criteria used to determine eligibility for grant funding up to 75% (see supporting documents below). The New York State Library defines the criteria used to determine eligibility for grant funding between 75% and 90% (see supporting documents below). Note that, regardless of the level of eligibility of a library (50%, 75%, 90%), ALL decisions on the distribution of allotted funds to UHLS member libraries are made by the UHLS Board of Trustees.

For much more information about the grant program please visit the Construction Grant section of the NYS DLD website at Of particular note are the Program Guidelines and Instructions and the Frequently Asked Questions sections.

There are several links below to additional supporting information about the construction grant program here in UHLS. Please contact Tim Burke at UHLS if you have additional questions about this program.

UHLS Construction Grant Typical Timeline (PDF)

UHLS 75% and 90% Criteria Outline (PDF)

Current Year UHLS 75% and 90% Eligibility Chart (PDF)

UHLS Guidelines for Construction Grant Evaluation (PDF)

UHLS Construction Grant Funding History Chart (PDF)

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