The proposed $19 million cut represents an 80% reduction from the $24 million in library property tax received from Erie County in 2004. The loss of these local funds triggers a reduction of an additional $2.8 million in State Library Aid as well as the loss of other library operating revenue. All 52 libraries across Erie County WILL CLOSE!
Circulation reached record-breaking highs in 2003, and trends continue in 2004. Year-to-date circulation is up 7%, in-library computer usage is up 24% and materials shipped among libraries is up almost 12%.
To implement the reduction, the County will cut the Property Tax for Library Purposes by almost 79%. That percentage of revenue will shift to the general County tax supporting Medicaid expenses.
Your property tax bill remains the same, but you will not receive ANY access to your library's collection, services, programs and technology.
From pre-school storyhours to Live Homework Help for students to outreach for seniors to computer access for the unemployed, the Library provides a wide range of vital services. The number of Erie County residents who use their library on a regular basis would fill every seat of HSBC Arena 18 times over.
November 19, 2004 - With 52 locations, mobile outlets and remote access via the Internet, the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library offers its resources and services to literally every resident in every corner of Erie County. Read the entire statement...
October 21, 2004 - The Buffalo and Erie County Public Library is a public trust. For nearly 170 years the people of our community have invested in their libraries, and those libraries have returned that investment many times over in resources, services and improved quality of life. Read the entire message...
Cartoon by Steve Greenberg for the Ventura County Star, Calif. Used with permission