In a move that is not really that surprising except for the timing Tauranga City Council is proposing lending charges to adult the adult collections. I was sort of expecting one of the councils to look at this, however I was thinking next year, since this year is an election year. Maybe the council there thinks that the bad press from increasing, and creating new library fees, will be offset by not having to increase rates?
This is not a good thing. 😦
My library, Tararua District Libraries, has managed to talk the council into proposing the end of the “Annual Card Fees”, although at the cost of a corresponding drop in the book budget. This is good, but with the way budgets are being formed and the continued pressure on council spending, I worry that we will be asked to look at increasing our revenue stream.
Below is the press release from the website.
A paper outlining proposed revenue increases for Libraries was presented to Council in December last year as part of the annual plan budgeting process.
The report, requested by Councillors, outlined how the Libraries could reach the required target by doubling their revenue over a five year period.
Councillors voted to go out for consultation on charging $0.50 for all adult loans (those not already subject to charges) for the next three years. After three years the charge is proposed to increase to $0.80.
It is not proposed to charge for children and teen items.
A further report was presented to Council yesterday (26 January 2010) by the General Manager of Libraries. This report was for Councillor’s information regarding savings that could be made in the libraries budget over the next three years.
After some discussion, Councillors’ accepted the report and the proposed savings will be incorporated in Council’s annual budget which is consulted on as part of the annual plan process. The proposed charges for adult loans was not discussed again at yesterday’s meeting.
The elected members are looking to community feedback on ‘charges and savings’ through the Annual Plan submission process to assist them make decisions about this proposal.
Frequently Asked Questions About Proposed Library Charges
Why is the Council proposing to increase library charges?
At the request of the Mayor and Councillors, in an effort to reduce the rates contribution to library services, library staff were asked for a paper outlining proposed revenue increases for the libraries. This paper was presented to Council on Thursday 3 December 2009 as part of the annual plan budgeting process.
Currently the libraries are 90% ratepayer funded, Council has requested that this decreases to 80% over the next 5 years. This means the libraries have to double their revenue over a five year period.
How much will I be expected to pay?
Councillors voted to go out for consultation on charging $0.50 for all adult items (those not already subject to charges) for the next three years. After three years the charge is proposed to increase to $0.80. It is not proposed to charge for children and teen items.
When will the proposed charges take effect?
If the proposed charges are approved as part of the Annual Plan process next year they will take effect from July 2010.
How can I express my opinion about this Council decision?
In March as part of the Annual Plan submission process you will have a chance to formally comment on the proposed charges. If you want Council to listen to your opinion you need to make a submission.
Formal submission forms will be available in March.
If you would like to contact someone now you have a choice of ways:
- Go to the Tauranga City website http://www.tauranga.govt.nz and type ‘elected members’ into the search box. All elected members’ contact details are listed here.
- If you would like to send an email to the Mayor and all elected members please use the following email address:
- Or you can always call the customer call centre on 577 7000.