Library board approves new budget
July 9, 2013 — The Lassen Library District's Board of Trustees approved an operating budget for the 2013-2014 year at its Thursday, June 19 meeting.
According to the budget document, the district expects to receive $143,193 in operating revenues in 2013-2014 from all sources: $6,387 from grants (including a one-time transfer of funds from the state library to cover expenses for sharing resources with other California libraries), $118,022 from its library tax, $6,944 from user fees, $5,737 from donations and fund-raising and $5,860 from service contracts, tutoring fees and GED exam fees.
The district expects total operating expenses to be $149,154. Employee compensation is budgeted at $65,862, with $19,971 for building costs, $18,222 for operating supplies and $37,699 for various administrative costs, such as accounting and custodial services, memberships, equipment leasing, insurance premiums and training.
Expenses are allocated to seven programming classes with $1,400 going to furnishings for the new test center, $8,209 for technology upgrades for the staff and the test center, $3,617 to the running of the testing center; $5,372 supporting the library's programming events such as summer reading, library week and movies; $1,290 for print and digital materials, $1,464 supporting the Bieber Library's Internet service and the remaining $127,802 for the district's general fund supporting non-programming operations at the library.
The budget anticipates a $5,961 deficit in revenues against expenses.
“This budget is in deficit at the moment due to some extraordinary expenses that initially will be covered from the district’s reserve fund,” said library director Jeff Hawkins. “The library needs to redesign and order new patron cards with an expected cost of $8,000 and the board approved the upgrading of staff computers at an expected cost of a bit more than $5,000. We still will have no book buying budget and no money to start any new or exciting programs we might come across during the year. As the year progresses we hope to raise additional funds that would reduce or eliminate the budget deficit.”
New to the library in this budget is income and expenses associated with becoming a PearsonVUE Test Center in order to offer the new computer-based GED exams that will begin in January 2014. The library will be able to offer other tests in the PearsonVUE exam portfolio to the community. Other items will continue last year’s efforts to upgrade the audio/visual capabilities in the library’s conference room.
This budget also reflects the library’s retreat from attempting to serve the whole of Lassen County as a result of the failure of Measure W at last November’s election.
“Not being able to extend the library tax to county residents living outside Susanville was the final indication that we needed to go back to our roots and concentrate our efforts on the Susanville residents who agreed to form this library in 1994,” said Hawkins. “That boundary retraction was officially completed in early June.”
“Now that our area of operations has been returned to its original boundaries the library’s board of trustees is reassessing the library’s future,” said board president Amy Owens. “With a new strategic vision we hope to better serve the community and hopefully be rewarded by the community with increased financial support sometime in the future.”
The library district's budget documents can be viewed on and downloaded from the library's website, lassenlibrary.org. Questions can be directed to the library director at 257-8113.
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