Did you know…

Revenues to Miami-Dade County libraries have been cut by more than half in the last four years causing reduced operating hours, massive layoffs, a reduction in new titles, and fewer programs for children and the community.

A $64 million budget recommended by the Library Advisory Board and the Coalition to Save our Libraries was rejected by the Miami-Dade County Commission on July 15, 2014 in favor of only a slight tax increase to finance a status quo budget that averts further service cuts and 90 layoffs recommended by the Mayor.

Libraries would operate with roughly the same $52 million budget as the current year, remaining under-funded, poorly equipped and short staffed, but the recent downward trend would end and a foundation for future growth would be secured.

Even this partial victory could be lost in September when Commissioners have the option to lower the preliminary tax rate passed in July, so we must redouble our efforts to hold the line against reductions and keep that $64 million amount in sight for next year to build upon what was accomplished to date and restore our Libraries to prior service levels that made it an award-winning system.

Upcoming dates for public testimony:

  • TBA –Six town hall meetings around Miami-Dade County
  • August 27, 9:30 a.m. Commission budget discussion
  • 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.

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