The Gardiner Library Proposition 414
By Doris Chorny
On the back of the November ballot, you will see a question, as shown below, placed there by the Gardiner Library Board to allow voters to decide our library’s budget.
In a recent review, almost 3,800 residents had a Gardiner Library card, with annual total library visits totaling 29,000, and with over 40,000 items circulated. The library offered 630 adult and 300 children’s program sessions, with a total attendance of about 10,250.
In comparison to other libraries in the Ramapo Catskill Library System which serve populations similar in size to Gardiner’s, the Gardiner Library spent 5.37% of its budget on new materials while other comparable libraries spent between 7% and 15% of their budgets. The Gardiner Library received a total of $243,230 from city, county and town taxes while the other comparable libraries received between $338,000 and $751,000.
The Gardiner Library is in the top 50% of libraries when ranked on total transactions per capita.
The library has not asked for a budget increase in 11 years. In that time, the Consumer Price Index has gone up 17.82%. As a result, the library’s current tax revenue of $229,000 buys only $194,364 today.
At the same time, operating costs have been on the rise. If passed, Proposition 414 would increase the Library’s budget by $45,846. The resulting budget of $275,076 remains a fraction of comparable libraries’ budgets.
What It Will Cost: The annual increased cost to a Gardinerite, per $100,000 of assessed home value, would be less than the price of a hard cover book for some and a little more than that for others. For example, it would cost an additional $6.00 per year for a property assessed at $100,000; $12 for one assessed at $200,000 and $18 per year for one assessed at $300,000.
Please vote on November 5th. The town needs your opinion.