Did you know…
Our library system was facing a $35 million budget next year after being crippled by four years of steep cutbacks and depleted reserves.
The Coalition to Save our Libraries fought for a $64 million budget, which was rejected by The Miami-Dade County Commission on July 15, 2014 in favor of a $54 million budget.
This will not restore many important services lost during four years of reductions, but it marks a new beginning — $54 million increases the materials budget, allows for technology upgrades, expands operating hours at some locations, prevents further layoffs, and provides a solid foundation on which to build upon.
But Commissioners have the option of reducing the increased library tax rate in September and wiping out our hard won victory. Public support is needed to make sure the $54 million budget for next year is finally adopted on Sept. 18 to secure a foundation for future growth that could one day restore our libraries to prior service levels that made it an award-winning system.
Remaining dates for public testimony:
- Sept. 2, Town Hall Budget Meetings - For times and locations.
- Sept. 4, 5 p.m. First reading of final budget
- Sept. 18, 5 p.m. Second reading and final budget passage
The final three meetings will be held at Government Center, 111 NW 1st Street, Miami
PUBLIC OPINION SURVEY
A poll of 5,200 registered voters in 13 Commission districts conducted by Bendixen & Amandi for the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce and Knight Foundation show overwhelming support for library funding and an opposition to further cuts.
BLOG: SHARING NEWS AND PERSPECTIVES
- Funds to buy children’s books would triple under new Miami-Dade library budget
- Libraries become an oasis for a city in turmoil
- Increased operating hours may be in the library’s future if the $54 million budget is finalized
- Historian Arva Moore Parks brings the little known jewels of our Library to light
- John Quick, President of Friends and a Coalition leader, explains why the preliminary tax rate must survive and clarifies discussion on the Commission dais regarding the Coalition’s original $64 million budget request.
- Jim Defede calls Miami Herald journalists the Bogie and Bacall of government reporting. Watch their most recent take on the budget scenario.
- The national Library Journal reports on the library budget crisis in Miami-Dade and the hurdles that remain into September.
- Sports Illustrated reports on the budget priorities in Miami-Dade favoring stadium over services like libraries and public safety.