Library Funding

Posted on Monday 24 October 2011

How is the Library Funded?

The Public Library Fund (PLF) is funded with 1.97% of the total tax revenue received by the State of Ohio and divided among the 251 public libraries in Ohio. While the PLF remains our primary source of funding, the amount of revenue it provides continues to fall. State funding of public libraries has decreased by over 22% in the past two years, 40% over the past decade.

In 2010, the PLF provided 51.4% of all revenue received by our Library. The Westerville Public LIbrary tax levy provided 42%.

2010 Revenue:

Public Library Fund, State of Ohio


Local Property Tax


Fines & Fees & Miscellaneous


What are the Library’s expenditures?

2010 Expenses:







Capital Outlay


Contract Services


Other Expenses


What are the proposed State Budget cuts?

Monthly distributions of the Public Library Fund so far this year have shown some growth, but Governor Kasich’s proposed State 2012-2013 biennium budget, reduces PLF revenue by another 5%. As a result, our Library would see an additional loss of about $261,316.00 dollars, over two years.

How will this budget cut affect the library?

This 5% cut is on top of a 40% reduction in State funding since 2000. Over the same time span, the number of items borrowed grew by 26%. The Library has already reduced hours, cut staffing, frozen salaries, reorganized the Library, postponed or cancelled capital improvements. We are currently looking at how best to make up this additional loss of revenue and are considering every option including reducing hours.

What is the Library’s funding outlook?

The Library continues to maintain strict control over expenses, and, in anticipation of further funding reductions, currently has a number of open jobs which it is not filling. Until State revenue stops declining, adequate Library funding remains at risk.

As we see continued growth in usage during these challenging economic times, it is clear that our Public Library is more valuable and relevant to the children and families of Westerville than ever before. We are committed to continuing to provide excellent library service to all residents of Franklin and Delaware County, as required by Ohio Law with reduced funding, but some difficult decisions will have to be made to operate within our budget.

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