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Council hesitant to boost library funding

Original post made on Jun 13, 2013

In city budget discussions on Tuesday, the City Council supported adding $50,000 to next year's library budget for new books, CDs, and DVDs and other materials. Even with the boost, the city's spending on such items will still be lower than in comparable cities' libraries.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, June 13, 2013, 9:57 AM

Comments (16)

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Posted by Casey
a resident of Rex Manor
on Jun 13, 2013 at 11:40 am

I learned with dismay that the City Council only restored $50K to the library's budget for materials. Considering the diverse language and culture demands in Mountain View that impact this budget in comparison, say, to the uniform demand for athletic and recreation facilities and programs, the library's budget supplement should be two to three times larger.

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Posted by Bruce Karney
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:13 pm

It would be very helpful to know the library's annual budget for materials. The $50K addition means one thing if it brings the acquisitions budget up to $100K and something entirely different if it brings it up to $1,050K. Also, what was last year's budget per capita in Mtn. View?

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Posted by Taxpayer
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:19 pm

It's okay to pay more for pension that benefits retirees that add no value to the citizens but not okay to spend money for the community? Who does the council member and city manager work for? I can't believe that we have a council that wants to add job that will have a large financial impact for the next 50 years but can't commit $50k a year for the citizens.

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Posted by James Hall
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:27 pm

Hey - I recall the head librarian making something like $190,000 - retiring after 30 years at a very hefty pension and then returning at $100 per hour to find and train a replacement. Does that make sense to anyone? It's management costs like this, not the cost of books, that are a huge anchor slowly sinking the library.

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Posted by vfree
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:30 pm

Seriously? I can access more information on my iPhone than I can find in our library. Everything in the library will fit on my Kindle. Do you have any idea how much we pay a libraian? My guess is the patrons of our library are suffering from OCD and can't possibly spend their day doing anything productive. This is the era of sensibility, let the past go.

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Posted by Konrad M. Sosnow
a resident of another community
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:41 pm

Once again the Mountain View City Council has turned its back on the residents of Mountain View. They are willing to pay exorbitant salaries and pensions but aren’t willing to commit $50k a year for the citizens Mountain View.

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Posted by Honor Spitz
a resident of another community
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:58 pm

A library is the heart and soul of a community and it provides a myriad of invaluable services, much more so than ever before. Many of the issues mentioned in the comments above are certainly worthy of further investigation, of course. However, keeping in mind that not everyone has access to computers, Kindles and the like, being able to go to the library is an important part of everyone's life, especially for those less privileged. Let's try to serve as much of the community, young, old and in-between as we can!!

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Posted by B. Minkin
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jun 13, 2013 at 2:59 pm

The city council serves developers, not the residents. If a corporation were building a new condo complex asked for $50K in new books, the library would have them.

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Posted by Margaret
a resident of Willowgate
on Jun 13, 2013 at 4:00 pm

Fund the library.

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Posted by Mountain View 1980
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jun 13, 2013 at 4:39 pm

Can't believe this city council anymore. They spend money on frivolous pet projects and won't even spend $50,000 for library. This library is always packed and it's wonderful place for the residents of MV. Which city council members voted against it? How can I find out how these people are voting?

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Posted by Observer
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 13, 2013 at 7:42 pm

Unbelievable... well maybe not. This council clearly is not interested in the good people of this town. It caters more to developers and the unions and city staff. I echo the criticisms above.

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Posted by Doug Pearson
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jun 13, 2013 at 9:54 pm

The proposed $50,000 for new books and other materials is less than I would like to see, but better than nothing. Thanks to the City Council for voting for it.

That is only one part of the Library's woes, however. The wages being paid are not enough to keep the library open as many hours per week as it should be. I've heard many people call the wages and pensions exorbitant throughout the city, not just in the library; I can't agree.

But people who claim the library is an unnecessary anachronism are wrong. It's possible that the library could dramatically extend its reach by means of online lending of digital books, etc (a virtual library) and I'd like to see that happen. But the large number of patrons who actually come into the building to browse the shelves, sit and read for a while, and check out materials make it clear to me that the physical library is still necessary, anachronism though it may be.

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Posted by DG
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jun 13, 2013 at 11:36 pm

Sorry, library lovers. The city council will need that money to pay another outside firm to do another conceptual sketch of something, possibly related to transit, possibly for a developer. The $50,000 should pay for a good part of the fees for such a needy project.

Don't you know by now that residents come last in this town?

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Posted by john
a resident of Willowgate
on Jun 15, 2013 at 10:08 am

For reference, here's the library budget: Web Link

For 2012-2013, the budget was $4,865,497, of which $4,094,224 was salaries, wages, and benefits. There's $448,450 allocated to "Materials and Supplies", though I don't know exactly what that includes.

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Posted by Rodger
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jun 15, 2013 at 11:22 am

The library needs to be open more hours during the week.

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Posted by Otto Maddox
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jun 17, 2013 at 1:24 pm

Just looking at the stats for the libary..

41 people working there, 30 permanent.

That's just under $100K per person.. the we know the part timers make a lot less than the full timers.

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