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Library 2012 Budget Process Begins

Public Invited to Chime In

The first draft of the 2012 proposed budget was discussed at last Tuesday’s Great Neck Library Board of Trustees’ meeting. It will likely see refinements as the weeks go by until its adoption by the board as the trustees review it line by line. It will come before the public for a vote on May 17.

The budget process is complicated by the fact that the collective bargaining agreement for covered staff expires on Dec. 31, 2011 and there is no way to predict the results of those negotiations.

The business manager, Neil Zitofsky, states in his memo to the board that any increases to staff would have to come from the accumulated surplus. At this point in the budget process, a 2 percent increase in taxes has been penciled in to refund the reserves. The total projected budget for 2012 is $8,426,000. The budget for this year’s 2011 budget is $8,372,000.

On the revenue side, 97.4 percent comes from taxation. The balance comes from fines, various fees, interest on savings, books sales and vending machine sales. On the expense side, the bulk goes to pay for salaries, $4,519,900, and employee benefits and taxes, $1,815,100.

The cost estimate to run the main building and three branch facilities comes to $896,600. This includes branch rental costs, utility costs, cleaning services, landscaping and snow removal, and property and liability insurance.

The cost estimate for materials and programs is $846,900. This category includes the cost of books, electronic format materials, videos and DVDs, periodicals, newspapers, database services, support for the Nassau Library System, and all the programs run in the various branches for all age groups.

The total library operations cost estimate is $314,500. This category includes items such as office supplies, computer supplies, telephone, postage, legal fees, election expenses, maintenance contracts for office equipment, computer and audio equipment.

The last category is for furniture and equipment, $33,000. The greatest expense under this category is for computers, $25,000.

According to Mr. Zitofsky’s memo, there is no provision for repairs to major systems such as the roof or the heating and air-conditioning systems. If repairs were to be needed, funds would have to come from various restricted funds.

The next budget workshop meeting will be on March 22 at 7:30 p.m. at the Main library.

On April 14, the final budget workshop will be held and the vote to adopt it will take place.

Budget documents are available for perusal at Main and at all branches.