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Darien Library

Report to the Board of Representative Town Meeting April 2010
Budget Summary

The Library’s budget proposal for fiscal year 2010-2011 calls for expenditures of $3,131,479, an increase of $70,130, or 2.3%. This is the smallest percentage increase in the Library budget for at least the last quarter century. We understand the continuing financial difficulties the taxpayers of Darien face, and we have worked hard to reduce this budget proposal to the lowest possible amount. In order to do so, we have taken aggressive actions to reduce personnel costs, including a second year of no increase in administrative salaries, restriction of merit increases to 2.25%, and reduction in part time hours based on efficiencies achieved in the organization of our services. As a result, we are reducing parttime staffing by 0.5 FTE. We have found the basis to reduce a number of our operating accounts in order to partially offset unavoidable budget increases in two building operating accounts – electricity use and building services. Also, we have undertaken an evaluation of our health insurance benefits, and believe we can hold back the increase in the cost of benefits to an amount less than currently projected for the Town. These, and other actions, are detailed later in this report. The table below outlines the major categories affecting the budget proposal:

Category Personnel Operating Accounts Health Insurance And Retirement Total

Increase ($11,815) $39,895 $42,050 $70,130

% Budget Increase (0.4%) 1.3% 1.4% 2.3%

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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Summary of Budget Increase Components
Contribution to Budget Percentage Darien Library Staffing Decisions Salary Increases Position Adjustments Total Staffing Decisions FICA Total of Staffing Decisions $ 28,002 $ (38,836) $ (10,833) $ (982) -0.4%

$ (11,815)

New Darien Library Operating Adjustments Operating Accounts Building Services Maintenance/Service Electricity & Gas Water and Sewage Insurance Life Insurance Library Supplies Postage Staff Development Audit Outsourced Cataloging Total Total of Operating Increases $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ 18,369 (2,000) 32,582 (3,200) (2,991) (1,065) (3,000) (1,000) (2,000) 200 4,000 $ $ 39,895 39,895 1.3% 1.3%

Externally Determined Appropriations Health Insurance Retirement Total $ $ 28,604 13,446 $ $ 42,050 42,050 1.4%

Total of Externally Determined Appropriations

Total Budget Increase

$

70,130

2.3%

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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Community Usage of the Library Statistics on use of Darien Library in the first nine months of this year compared to the first nine months of last year show a startling increase across a broad spectrum.1      Visits have increased 22.4% Circulation has increased 29.4% Computer Usage has increased 82.4% Reference and Reader Advisor questions answered have increased 97.8% Attendance at programs has increased 132.8%

Despite this increase in usage at one of the most intensively used libraries in the nation, we have continued our efforts to operate the Library at the least possible cost to the citizens of Darien by making a reduction in part-time staffing. The reduction in staffing levels continues the trend we began in fiscal year 2006. Darien Library has become a model for library operating efficiencies, and we have been visited by a number of other libraries for the sole purpose of studying how we perform so cost-efficiently. One of our vendors tells us that the set of our initiatives has become known in the industry as the “Darien Model.” A different vendor (a Fortune 100 corporation) has suggested holding seminars across the nation using our organizational management strategies as the focal point of analysis by other libraries. Budget Development Details Staffing In order to minimize our budget increase, we have taken the following actions to reduce staffing costs: 1. The administrative leadership of the Library – Director Louise Berry, Assistant Directors Alan Kirk Gray and John Blyberg and Head of Finance and Accounting Alison Fisher -- will take no salary increase. 2. Other staff members will be granted merit increases of no more than 2.25%. The average salary increase across all staff will be 1.4%, because the Library
1

A small part of this increase is accounted for by the fact that the Library was closed last year in December. But as we evaluate the trend of use, we see that we experienced greater-than-normal use of the Library and its resources last year in the months before closing – including many people who visited, some from out of town, to see the old Library before it closed, and many who took out books to tide them over the closure. We believe that the trends outlined above will be matched by the total year’s statistical outcome.

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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grants salary increases on anniversary dates, not automatically at the beginning of the fiscal year. 3. The workweek will be maintained at 40 hours, after its increase from 37.5 hours last year, in order to reduce our need for part-time hours. 4. We have found the opportunity to make reductions in the use of part-time staffing in a number of service areas, by continuing to promote operational efficiencies. 5. We continue to outsource a broader range of acquisition services for new items, reducing internal staff requirements. Total staffing will equal 29.2 FTE2 for the 2010-2011 budget, a reduction of 0.5 FTE from the staff allocation in the 2009-2010 budget.

Darien Library Budgeted Staffing (State Report FTEs adjusted before 2009-2010)
Full Time Equivalent (FTE) Staffing Totals 35 31.1 30 27.5 26.3 25 31.4 31.4

FTEs
28.3 28.2 26.6

30.6

29.7

29.2

Fiscal Years

As a result of the actions we have taken with respect to staffing, total personnel compensation costs, including FICA, will decrease by $11,815. 29.2 FTE is less staffing than the Library had in the three fiscal years between 2002 and 2005 when it was in a building half the size providing fewer services. Beginning with fiscal year 2006, the Library began a systematic and rigorous annual, zerobased review of staffing that provides the basis for operating efficiencies while continuing to provide extraordinary customer service to the community.

2

FTE: Full Time Equivalent, a measure of staffing that accumulates the hours of part time employees into an index.

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Operating Accounts The Library’s Operating Accounts are budgeted to increase by $39,835 primarily as the result of increases in two areas, Electricity and Gas, and Building Services, and a small increase in one other account, Outsourced Cataloging. We have been able to make decreases in a number of other accounts that provide a partial offset.

Operating Accounts with Major Increases Electricity & Gas 1. The cost of electricity is budgeted to increase by $32,582, or 37%, because the current year’s budgeted amount -- $87,984 – was based on projections of energy demand made in the design phase of the building; these projections were superseded by later projections, which themselves are 20% lower than actual experience. During the building’s commissioning process, we have made changes to building operations that have resulted in some energy demand decreases, but these have had minor effect on overall demand. We operate the building as efficiently as possible – for example, this winter public spaces have been set to 70° and staff spaces at 68° in most respects – and overall demand is 40% less than a code-compliant building. But we have not met the early expectations we had been given, and on which our first energy budget was based. As we have been discussing with the Town, we believe that we are unlikely to achieve further savings on energy use. The budgeted cost of energy for 20102011 is below projections for the current year’s total year expense because the Library has participated in the Town of Darien’s consortium bidding process initiated by Karl Kilduff. It should be noted that this account also includes the cost of the streetlights on the Library’s building periphery, and the cost of natural gas to fuel both the backup emergency generator, which self-starts once a week, and the Library’s domestic hot water heater. Building Services 2. The Building Services Account supports outsourced services – janitorial services, garbage removal, grounds maintenance and snow plowing and sanding. Beginning in July 2010, we will be including an allocation for carpet cleaning, window cleaning and stormwater drain cleanout (the latter required by Planning & Zoning.)

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The increase of $18,369 in this account is related to these additional services. We have rebid a number of continuing services to be certain we were receiving competitive pricing, and believe that the budget for this account is the appropriate amount to provide services to a 54,000 SF very actively used building. Outsourced Cataloging 3. Outsourced Cataloging provides the funds for the services of third party preparation of books, DVDs, CDs, Books on CD and other items to make them shelf ready. We began this initiative several years ago, and it has proven very cost-effective, allowing us to reduce staff time significantly in excess of the cost of the outsourced services. We are increasing this account by $4,000 to meet the needs of increased circulation. Health Insurance and Retirement Accounts

Health Insurance Health insurance expenditures are projected to increase by $28,604, or 8.7%. We are projecting 22 participants in the Health Plan, the same as the current budget year allocation The current indication from the Town is for a 13% increase for Health Insurance costs next year. We have been evaluating alternatives, and believe that by a combination of giving staff members a choice of the alternative POS Town Plan, or establishment of Health Savings Account Plans for other staff members, this increase can be held to a maximum of half that, and therefore we are budgeting an increase of $28,604, or 8.7%. Retirement We have budgeted the amount of Retirement contribution provided to us by the Town, and this represents an increase of $13,446, or 11.9%.

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The Library’s Central Role in Darien The Library is the community’s most actively used resource. 19,052 residents of Darien -- 94.1% of the population --have an active Library card. Members of the community on average take out 31 books, DVDs, books on CD or other items, and this is far and away the highest circulation rate of any library in the state, and one of the highest in the nation. 82.2% of Darien seniors use the Library, more than any other organization or program in the community, according to a survey by Aging in Place/The Community Fund in the fall of 2009. The table below lists the five organizations or programs most highly used by seniors, according to the survey: Program/Service Darien Library Place of Worship Darien Community Center Darien Senior Center YMCA Aging in Place in Darien Use Now 82.2% 64.8% 36.3% 30.0% 24.4% 52.1% Will Use in Next 5 Years 85.0% 68.4% 41.5% 44.9%

At the other end of the age spectrum, the Library is used by young children and their parents and care-givers – often the Library is the first public space a young child ever visits, and by a growing number of middle school and high school students who have made the Library the place to visit for studying. For everyone of all ages, the New Darien Library is a community center; a distribution center for books, magazines, DVDs, videos, books on tape, technology and other materials; a cultural center for programs for all ages; a haven for study and research; a busy technology and continuing education hub; a resource for Town government and many community organizations. Library users constantly ask that we extend our hours.

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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Recent use trends build on past successes. For many years the Darien Library has proven to be a high-profile example of extraordinary customer service provided in a remarkably cost-efficient manner. The HAPLR study released in April 2010, ranked Darien Library tenth in the country among libraries its size, and highest in the state. (This survey was based on objective statistical measures such as the number of books owned and circulated, the number of visits made by residents, and the cost effectiveness of the Library’s operation; Darien Library has been ranked in the top 10 in each of the survey’s ten years.) As noted earlier, the Library has seen extraordinary levels of increase in the use of the Library this year since the opening of the new building.

Service to the Whole Community The Library collaborates with many Darien and other organizations to provide services to the community. The expanded Library’s many meeting rooms have been made available at no expense by Board of Trustees policy to the Town of Darien and its Boards and Commissions. A list of programs and presentations provided by the Library for the benefit of the community at no cost to the user organizations includes: Monthly free blood pressure screenings by Nursing & Home Care in coordination with the Darien Health Department Seasonal flu vaccinations by the Darien Health Department “Office Hours” for Senator Bob Duff Public forums held by Sen. Bob Duff and Rep. Terrie Wood Representative Town Meeting members meetings An ethics workshop for the CT Coalition of Municipalities Darien Police Department training and staff meetings Monthly passport days for the U.S. Post Office U.S. Census Bureau testing for Census Bureau jobs Area Nine Cable Council (Darien TV 79) Darien YMCA Workshops and Community Initiatives Darien Energy Task Force 3/50 Project to support local retailers

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For a number of years the Library has provided catalog services to the Darien Nature Center and to the Darien Historical Society for their collection of books, (and in the case of the Society, of their documents and historical Darien items) so they can be accessed by community residents remotely from the Library or from home. The Library plays a central technology role in the on-line presence of the community, assisting more than 55 community non-profits to maintain their web presences. The library makes available technology to assist non-profits with their activities, for example by lending notebook computers to assist with registration drives, and video projectors to assist in public presentations. The New Darien Library provides a much greater range of resources to the community – meeting spaces, quiet study areas, accessible collections, services to the young and mature alike – as an extension of its role as the cultural center of Darien. A broader range of community residents, from Senior Citizens to young children to Middle and High School students who fill the Library to study, from community residents who use the Library for enjoyment or as support for their work, all find support and resources available to their needs and interests, matched by extraordinary customer service that has a national reputation for excellence.

The Community’s Foremost Example of a Public-Private Partnership The New Darien Library’s First Anniversary January 10, 2010, was the first anniversary of the opening of the New Darien Library. The $28 million project to fund construction of the New Darien Library, which opened that day, is the largest gift to the Town by any measure, and stands alone in terms of commitment to the future of the community and its residents. More than 1,650 families donated $24 million – a measure of support beyond anything this community has ever experienced. They responded to the history of service the Darien Library has provided over the years, and expressing their confidence in the future of the Library, and its place at the heart of the Town of Darien. Annual Support We remind you that each year the Library trustees raise all the money the Library spends on books, DVDs, research services, programs and other materials through an annual fund drive. We also pay for all on-going capital expenses from the Friends Fund. (This year we expect to spend approximately

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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$250,000 on technology projects, as part of a total Friends’ expenditure of approximately $1,000,000.) This unique funding model has been attempted by libraries in other communities, but without the success that has taken root in Darien. For years this community has been the recipient of funding that replaces the use of tax dollars for the collection development, technology initiatives, programs and services that have allowed the Darien Library to become a community asset. In addition, from this funding has come the investment in productivity measures that has helped make Library employees the most productive in the region, at a considerable savings in labor costs that would have been borne by the taxpayers. The Darien Library Budget Proposal The major elements of the Library’s budget proposal are outlined below, and we ask that they be considered in the context of three important considerations:  Darien Library employees work a 40 hour week. They agreed to an increase from 37½ hours per week last year to hold back the budget increase. We do not seek to compare this schedule to other employees of the Town or School District, but we do know that our employees work harder, are more productive, and provide better service than any other library. We ask them to do so with the understanding that they will be provided the support necessary to match their efforts. This year they continue to accept an extraordinary change in working conditions while at the same time we have reduced part-time staffing at a time of substantially increased use of the Library. The Friends of the Library made significant investments to promote productivity and efficiency for Library staff, and they are committed to continue their role in the Public-Private Partnership. The Friends gift of the New Darien Library to the community last year was a watershed event in the history of this community. The Public-Private Partnership between the Town and the Library continues to provide a substantial benefit to the residents of the Town of Darien. The Library’s administration has demonstrated over many years that it will ask only for the resources it needs, and that it can be trusted to manage those resources in an exemplary manner. The funding we request is the minimum necessary to provide the community the services it requires to meet the increased use of the New Darien Library.

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting

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Highlights of increases in this year’s budget request: 1. Salary Budget: ........................................................................ $ (11,815)   The Library workweek is 40 hours and employees who continue in the same position will receive merit pay increases not exceeding 2.25%. A reorganization of Library services has yielded a year-to-year decrease of 0.5 FTE, which offsets pay increases and yields a net reduction in personnel costs, including FICA. Electricity and Gas budget will increase by $32,582 to recognize current energy rate use in the new building, after giving effect to the new rates negotiated by the Town of Darien. Building services for cleaning, snow plowing, grounds maintenance, carting, carpet cleaning, etc will increase by $18,369 to account for the use of the building. These increases are partially offset by minor decreases in other operating accounts

2. Darien Library Operating Expenditures: ................................ $39,895 

3. Health Insurance and Retirement Expenses: ....................... $ 42,050  Health insurance expenditures are projected to increase of $28,604, less than the amount that would result from the Town of Darien projection, because we believe we will be able to restructure coverage for employees to reduce costs. Retirement expenditures will increase by $13,446, per guidance from the Town of Darien.

Total Budget Increase (2.3%) ....................................................... $70,130 The Board of Trustees of the Darien Library urges your support of this budget proposal.

Jim Clark President, Board of Trustees

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A Recurring Side Note on Non-resident Use of the Library As one of the finest libraries in the nation – renowned for its customer service, collection, lending practices and innate friendliness -- it should be expected that Darien Library is visited by some residents of adjoining communities exercising their right under state regulations to use the services to which they are entitled – borrowing books, DVDs and other items, using reference resources, logging on to the Library’s computers. However, it is important to note that non-resident use, which is concentrated in a few areas of the Library’s collection and services – DVDs and Books on CD in particular – is lower than it has been at any time in the past 19 years. Most importantly, non-resident use of the Library has an insignificant effect on the Library’s tax-supported budget. Specifically, the only expenditures in the prospective Town budget that can be attributed to non-resident use are approximately $1,000 for paper supplies and $2,740 for RFID tags. The Friends’ budget pays for all books, DVDs, Books on CD and technology – so the additional items acquired for increased circulation are not a Town expense. More importantly, the Library has not increased staff in any way because of nonresident use, and, if all non-resident use went away, would not be able to reduce staffing positions or hours. All Library staffing decisions are based on a system that calculates position requirements from a zero-based model allocating service positions and tasks, not hours. We staff for service positions – Reader Advisors Welcome Desk, Children’s Room, Information Services, and Teen Center and Power Library – and for tasks -ordering and processing books, program development and delivery, web page development and update, circulation back office tasks, for example. None of these would change if non-resident use declined or even went away. We staff for service positions and for tasks, and then we automate those tasks (with funds from the Friends’ budget) so that volume increases do not require increased staffing. For example, though circulation has increased by more than 50% in the past six years, we are making fewer, not more, telephone calls to patrons because we have provided upgrades to our ILS that email notification. We have automated and outsourced our book ordering so fewer personnel purchase and process more books. The other elements of the Library’s town budget – lighting, heating, telephone, janitorial services, payroll, and all personnel benefits, for example – are not related to the profile of use by non-residents.

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Actual 2008-09 Salaries Administrative Member Services Support TOTAL Fringe Benefits Social Security Town Retirement Health, Dental and LTD Life Insurance Unemployment Comp. TOTAL Building Operations Electricity & Gas Water & Sewer Insurance Building Services Maintenance/Service TOTAL Operations Library Supplies Janitor Supplies Postage Printing Staff Development Internet/Telephone Audit Payroll and Advertising Outsourced Cataloging TOTAL TOTAL DISBURSEMENTS 337,534 1,202,243 337,085 1,876,862 143,210 118,124 263,549 4,815 1,500 531,198 129,506 3,169 17,385 111,964 95,543 357,567 42,874 11,937 9,533 3,312 21,695 31,459 12,450 45,388 178,648 2,944,275

Approved Budget 2009-10 340,368 1,226,400 383,569 1,950,338 146,146 112,736 329,102 4,662 1,500 594,147 87,984 6,200 34,781 120,000 122,000 370,965 30,000 11,000 5,000 2,000 8,000 12,600 13,250 64,050 145,900 3,061,349

Proposed 2010-11 340,368 1,209,736 389,400 1,939,504 145,164 126,182 357,706 3,597 1,500 634,150 120,566 3,000 31,790 138,369 120,000 413,725 27,000 11,000 4,000 2,000 6,000 12,600 13,450 68,050 144,100 3,131,479

2010-11 from 2009-10 $ % Increase Increase 0 (16,665) 5,831 (10,833) (982) 13,446 28,604 (1,065) 40,003 32,582 (3,200) (2,991) 18,369 (2,000) 42,760 (3,000) (1,000) (2,000) 200 4,000 (1,800) 70,130 0.0% -1.4% 1.5% -0.6% -0.7% 11.9% 8.7% -22.8% 0.0% 6.7% 37.0% -51.6% -8.6% 15.3% -1.6% 11.5% -10.0% 0.0% -20.0% 0.0% -25.0% 0.0% 1.5% 6.2% -1.2% 2.3%

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Report to the Representative Town Meeting
Salary Budget Town Retirement Health Insurance

April 2010

Our maximum merit increase for existing staff is 2.25 %; FTEs have been reduced by 0.5. Allocation provided by Town Hall We are in the Town plan, and have budgeted less than the rates indicated by the Town, in the expectation we will be able to achieve savings by restructuring participation in the health plans. Library is self-insured. We are retaining the same budget allocation as last year. We are increasing our budget to match the electricity usage of the building as determined by experience, and are budgeting the Town of Darien’s consortium electricity rates. Budget is reduced to actual billings experienced in the first year of the new building. We are using the rates advised by the Town. Maintenance and service on the new building’s systems. This includes HVAC, the geothermal system, elevators, building management, security and phone systems. This includes contracted cleaning, snow plowing, grounds, cleanout of our water retention system and other services. We are increasing our budget to reflect the needs of cleaning the actively used new building. We are reducing this amount to reflect experience, based on our conversion last year to providing patron printing on networked copiers, not printers. Primarily light bulbs, cleaning supplies and paper products for the public restrooms.. We continue to look to reduce postage by focusing on electronic communication to our users. We have further reduced staff development to an absolute minimum of staff hours. This account provides funds for maintenance of our fiber connection to the State of CT CEN, and our telephone lines and usage. Engagement fee for the Library’s GAAP audit. Outsourced cataloguing services to reduce the need for staff hours. Increased demand for books requires an increase in this account

Unemployment Compensation Electricity Water and Sewer Insurance Maintenance/Service Building Operations

Library Supplies Janitor Supplies Postage and Printing Staff Development Internet/Telephone Audit Outsourced Cataloging

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Darien Library
Fact Sheet 2010
 Darien Library has been designated a top 10 library for ten years straight in a survey by the Hennen American Public Libraries Ranking Index. In 2010 it was ranked the tenth highest of all libraries its size in the country.  Darien Library is the busiest library in Connecticut on a per capita basis. Darien residents borrow more books on average (31) than any other community.  94.1% of Darien residents have library cards.  Visits to the Library have increased 22% this year to date.  The Library’s services to the community’s senior citizens are broad-based and significant: o A recent survey showed that seniors rely on the Library more than any other community resource for programs and resources.  During the past year, there were 22,516 participants in Children’s Library programs, such as Storytime, Born to Read, Sleepytime, Drop-in Storytime, preschool, elementary and Middle School visits and BookMANIA!. Attendance at Adult programs was 10,594.  Users cite superior personal service given by the library staff as the primary reason they prefer Darien Library.  The library is a model of excellence in the use of new technology and hosts the web pages for 55 local community organizations.  The Library’s Blogs are providing both information and entertainment to those members of the community who wish to subscribe to a new form of communication, and have gained national recognition.  A study by the CT State Library in 2004 showed Darien Library had the lowest cost per circulation item of all libraries studied. This is still the case.

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THE DARIEN LIBRARY VISION
Our vision is to inform, educate, entertain and enrich our community.

THE DARIEN LIBRARY MISSION
The Library will provide access to a broad array of content, as well as training

and assistance to help people successfully navigate and use information.
The Library will provide a broad array of programs and services to educate,

entertain and enrich people.
The Library will be proactive and creative in anticipating and responding to

community needs for resources, programs and services.
The Library will be accessible: physically to people during convenient hours

and electronically twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week and three hundred and sixty five days a year, and without charge to the individual user.
The Library will be the heart of the community, providing flexible and

inviting environments within which to access and enjoy its resources.
The Library will be a customer-driven organization with friendly, professional

staff dedicated to creating a positive and fun library experience.
The Library will attract, develop and sustain a highly professional staff in an

environment where teamwork, high standards and esprit de corps support excellence.
The Library will collaborate with other town agencies and community groups

to serve the needs of the community.
The Library will be a public-private partnership, funded annually by a

combination of taxpayer dollars and individual donations sufficient to sustain a library of excellence.
The Board of Trustees will obligate itself to continually attract new trustees

who are accomplished individuals with diverse expertise who have the time, interest, and dedication required to support the Library in pursuit of its vision and mission.

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