New Jersey law (N.J.S.A. 40:54-8) sets the minimum funding for municipal public libraries at “1/3 mill,” or $0.33 on each $1,000 of equalized value of all assessable property in the Town. By State law, the municipality must allocate this money to the library in its annual budget. Unlike some libraries in New Jersey, the Mahwah Public Library does not receive funds above the “1/3 mill” minimum. As a result, the Library’s budget tracks the equalized property value; as property values fluctuate, so does the Library’s annual budget.
From 2009 through 2014, the equalized value of all property in Mahwah declined by 16.4%. As a result, the Library’s municipal funding decreased to $1,963,028 in 2014, down from a peak of $2,349,300 in 2009. In 2015, the equalized value showed modest signs of recovery and the municipal appropriation increased by 1.05%. In 2016, however, this small gain was erased and the budget declined by 1.01%, or $19,948. As a result, the Library's funding for 2016 is still significantly below the funding it received in 2007, despite lending activity increasing nearly 30% and program attendance increasing over 200% in the past nine years.
The Library is in the process of developing a new Strategic Plan to guide its growth over the next three years. While the new plan must be finalized and approved by the Board, this draft budget incorporates many of the ideas discussed by the Strategic Planning Committee. Notably, this budget increases funding for programs that bring the community into the Library. It focuses enhanced staffing by adding a PR/marketing position and a technology aide position, and by including funds for continuing education and development of a core competencies program for all staff. It also includes funding to being a new delivery-by-mail program for residents.
The 2016 budget absorbs a 1.3% reduction in overall funding by carefully managing expenses in all categories. Payroll expenses are kept low thanks to an anticipated retirements; medical expenses are significantly lower than in the past thanks to savings realized by the new insurance plan and one full-time employee opting-out of the benefits program; materials are maintained at a robust level; additional funding is given over to program expenses in order to emphasize programs and bring people into the Library; building and utility are kept low thanks to discounts under the MRESC contract and savings realized by energy saving measures implemented over the past year; operating and other expenses are also carefully evaluated with slight increases in staff development offset by savings in other areas to ensure that Township resident continue to have the best possible library.
With thoughtful planning, the Library will continue to play a vital role in as the center of the community, offing Mahwah residents unrivaled opportunities for personal growth.
|2015 Budget||2016 Budget||Change - 2015 Budget to 2016 Budget||% of 2016 Overall Expense|
|4000 · Carryover||-||-||-100.0%|
|4100 · Additional Board Appropriation||-||-||-100.0%|
|4200 · Municipal Appropriation||1,983,717||1,963,769||-1.0%|
|4300 · NJ State Aid||11,253||11,321||0.6%|
|4400 · Interest||500||300||-40.0%|
|4500 · Gifts & Donations||4,000||4,000||0.0%|
|4520 · Grants|
|4600 · Patron Revenue||33,700||28,700||-14.8%|
|4700 · Miscellaneous Revenue||11,500||9,550||-17.0%|
|4800 · Unemployment Reserve|
|Other Types of Expenses|
|5000 · Salaries and Withholdings||1,032,859||1,037,953||0.5%||51.6%|
|5100 · Personnel Benefits||376,556||313,262||-16.8%||15.6%|
|5200 · Library Materials|
|5210 · Books||143,000||142,000||-0.7%|
|5220 · Audio-Visual||67,500||65,500||-3.0%|
|5230 · Periodicals||8,000||8,000||0.0%|
|5240 · Digital & Online Resources||35,000||40,619||16.1%|
|Total 5200 · Library Materials||253,500||256,119||1.0%||12.7%|
|5300 · Programming|
|5310 · Adult||27,000||28,000||3.7%|
|5320 · Young Adult||15,500||16,500||6.5%|
|5330 · Juvenile||20,000||21,000||5.0%|
|5340 · ESL||4,000|
|Total 5300 · Programming||62,500||69,500||11.2%||3.5%|
|5400 · Operating Expense||141,941||149,143||5.1%||7.4%|
|5500 · Professional Service||26,000||30,000||15.4%||1.5%|
|5600 · Fixtures, Furnishings & Equip||10,000||10,000||0.0%||0.5%|
|5700 · Building & Grounds||140,673||143,909||2.3%||7.2%|
|Net Ordinary Income||641||7,754|
The Library values integrity and acts with honesty and fairness as it conduct its business. As part of the Library's commitment to transparency and open government, recent audit results are posted online.