You already buy stuff from Amazon, and you probably use the Gardiner Library for books or other services. How about getting free money for the library just by using the Amazon link on any page of the Library’s web site? Seriously.
If you access Amazon via the Amazon link on any page of the Library’s web site, the Library gets a credit from Amazon of from 4 to 8.5% of the value of your purchases based on types and numbers of products you buy. Since the Library purchases most of the new items for its collections from Amazon, it made sense to participate in this program.
As Library Manager Nicole Lane explained, “Amazon is usually the least expensive source so we buy most of our acquisitions from them.” In 2014, the Library received $650 in credits from Amazon in this way, which amount equaled 10% of the Library’s 2015 acquisitions budget of $6,500.
You can further benefit the Library if you also use Amazon Smile with the Gardiner Library designated as your beneficiary. Click on the Amazon link on any page of the Library’s web site. Your Amazon Smile page should come up. Place your order and the Library again receives a credit of the same 4 to 8.5% of the value of your purchases, plus 0.5% because you used Amazon Smile.
By the way, you cannot claim a tax deduction for these donations since they are made by Amazon and they should be in addition to—and not a substitute for—your own continued cash support for the Library. This is just a way to provide the Library with extra money to purchase new items, such as books, movies and audio books for its collections.
Here’s another one: use cash or a check and buy a $50 ShopRite or Stop & Shop gift card at the Library . The Library gets to keep $2.50 of that. Since starting the program in July, 2014, the library sold 130 of these cards ($6,000 worth of groceries) and earned $300. And these cards could be useful for grocery budgeting, too. Say you’ve budgeted $200 a month for food. Buy four $50 gift cards from the Library at the beginning of the month. As you use them, you know exactly what’s left. Unfortunately, Hannaford’s in Modena does not have a similar gift card program.
We all eat; we all probably buy things from Amazon. If we all did it through these programs, the financial impact would be major. The Library’s 2015 budget is $318,000, so if it sells 4,000 $50 ShopRite or Stop&Shop gift cards, it would cover $10,000 of that, and if supporters bought $130,000 from Amazon through the button on any of the Library’s web pages, the Amazon credit to the Library could equal its $6,500 book acquisitions budget figure.
The more residents participate in these two programs over the longer term, the later the need for the Library to request an increase in tax money. Free money is always better than raising taxes.