JANESVILLE—The “silent” part of the Hedberg Public Library's capital fundraising campaign starts with an invitation-only meeting Friday night, and the work to remodel the building's interior could start next fall.

Library Director Bryan McCormick said a committee will seek the larger donations to between now and the end of the year.

A public campaign, which would include Janesville school classrooms competing to raise money, would happen in the spring of 2017.

If all goes as planned, renovation would begin in the fall of 2017, McCormick said.

Plans are to make the changes in phases, so the library will never close to accommodate the construction work, McCormick said.

Plans call for a centrally located information desk, new study areas and technology upgrades.

McCormick said the work is expected to cost $2.8 million to $2.9 million. Fundraising would cover $1.5 million to $2 million. Borrowing and the library's fund balance would pay the rest.

Those figures are not as high as previous figures because some of the current furnishings will be reused, rather than buying new ones, as the architect proposed, McCormick said.

The library was rebuilt and expanded in the mid-1990s, in part with a grant from Gerry and Don Hedberg, the founders of Lab Safety Supply, who donated $4.66 million. The entire project cost $8 million, according to the library website.

The rebuilt library opened in 1996.

Gerry Hedberg also endowed a capital fund that has paid for furnishings and a wall replacement over the years, McCormick said. That fund produces $8,000 to $12,000 a year, and that money might be used to buy new furnishings to go with the remodeling, McCormick said.

The library board met Tuesday and agreed to enter into an agreement with the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin, which would received the donations, manage pledges and pay for the work.

The board also heard McCormick's take on the city's 2017 budget process.

The library in recent years has received increased funding based on the city's increased property tax revenue, but the city's contribution next year is likely to remain the same as this year, McCormick said.

The city also will continue to charge the library for services it supplies, such as accounting and human resources, and those costs could go up, McCormick said.

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