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Connecting People… to the World of Ideas and Information. Our Library Is A Major Community Asset. Busiest Main Library in the country Among the busiest libraries in the U.S. Top 10 in Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings for libraries serving a population of 500,000 or more.

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Connecting People…

to the World of Ideas and Information

our library is a major community asset
Our Library Is A MajorCommunityAsset

Busiest Main Library in the country

Among the busiest libraries in the U.S.

Top 10 in Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings for libraries serving a population of 500,000 or more


Key Metrics:

5.6 million visits annually

15.6 million items borrowed in 2008

2.1 million reference questions

9.5 million items in our collection

Over 14,000 programs annually

40 branches and the Main Library

Online resources used 87 million times

907,000 square feet of space

245,000 cardholders


Library Use Is Continuing To Grow

Reference questions, computer use, visits, program attendance also up

supporting education and the economy
Supporting Education And The Economy

Workforce Education

Kindergarten Readiness

Academic Success

Small Business Development

value for money southwestern ohio s roi in public libraries
Value For Money: Southwestern Ohio’s ROI In Public Libraries

Using a conservative measure of value, the total quantifiable direct economic benefit of every dollar expended by libraries was


drop in primary funding
Drop in Primary Funding
  • Need and use growing
  • Primary funding decreasing
  • 28% drop since 2000
  • 19% drop since 2008
no local funding
No Local Funding

No property taxes

No financial support from Hamilton County, the City of Cincinnati or any Hamilton County cities or villages

public library fund
Public Library Fund
  • Up to 90% of annual revenue
  • Percent of State General Revenue Funds
  • Low State income = low Library income
  • Further reduction in new State Budget Bill
cost containment measures since 2000
Cost Containment Measures Since 2000
  • Reduced:
  • hours of operation by 10%
  • staff positions by 20%
  • employee benefits
  • Cancelled capital projects & maintenance
  • Reorganized Main Library to save $1 million
since 2000
Since 2000
  • Library circulation increased by 17%
  • Library operating cost grew by 15%
  • Inflation grew by 25%
  • State funding dropped by 28%
surviving 2009

Surviving 2009

Capital funds, gifts and prior-year savings used to operate this year will be gone in 2010.

annual budget gap
Annual Budget Gap
  • Current gap between need and income is over $14 million
  • Gap in 2010 is $16-30 million
local funding

Local Funding

The Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County – the only metropolitan library in Ohio with no local funding.

(in millions)

Hamilton County (1 library) $ 0

Cuyahoga County (9 libraries) $81.3

Franklin County (7 libraries) $32.2

Lucas County (1 library) $14.0

Summit County (7 libraries) $14.4

Montgomery County (4 libraries) $12.5

Stark County (7 libraries) $ 5.4

Mahoning County (1 library) $ 3.0

Local Funding Comparison


Countywide 1 Mill Tax Levy

Generates $20 million annually

$2.50 per month/$100,000 of property value

Funds basic operating expenses, cost of meeting growing demand and maintenance of Library facilities

citizens for your library s future
Citizens For Your Library’s Future
  • Campaign budget $500,000
  • Pledged/donated $250,000
  • Expect no organized opposition
we will be forced to cut vital services if we do not secure a steady source of funding
We Will Be Forced To Cut Vital Services If We Do Not Secure A Steady Source Of Funding:
  • Further reductions in hours of operation
  • Further reductions in staff
  • 15-20 branch libraries closed
  • Further reductions in new books and other materials
  • Services and programs cut
  • Countywide impact
new funding would allow the library to
New Funding Would Allow The Library To:

Keep branch libraries open

Continue to update books, reference materials and other materials

Continue special programs for children and teenagers, including homework centers

Maintain services for seniors

Upgrade public computers and online services

Keep high quality staff

community attitude survey shows strong support
Community Attitude Survey Shows Strong Support
  • 70% of voters would vote for a Library levy
  • 92% rated the quality of the Library as excellent or good
  • 88% agree that the Library should continue to offer programs and activities for children and teenagers
  • 54% are more likely to vote for a levy knowing the Library has a deficit and will have to make drastic cuts
in closing
In Closing…
  • The Library is a valuable community asset
  • Must diversify funding and reduce dependence on State taxes
  • Many cuts have already been made
  • Now in survival mode
  • Levy failure would be devastating
  • Levy success keeps Library doors open