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Nanuet Library's Budget: "Drastic Changes" Needed

The library's accountant said that unless big changes are done, the library will not be able to stay below the 2 percent tax cap. Options discussed included going out for a capital project bond, eliminating or charging for services and going over t

 

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At the last Nanuet Library Board meeting, the library’s accountant, Joe Modafferi, went over the year-end budget. The budget was not complete since he still needed to balance out $7.22.

With the way the budget’s been going, I thought this would be (helpful) to the board,” he said. The budgets papers are attached to this article as a PDF.

He added that the money from fines is “the main revenue we’re going to be short on” and part of the reason is because of e-books. When checked out, e-books are not fined because when it’s due, it simply deletes itself off of the e-reader.

The library board meets tonight at 7 p.m. 

Expenses

One of the largest expenditures that many organizations have been dealing with is personnel and personnel benefits.

“We had an extra payroll this year. The rates went up drastically this year … on pension and health insurance,” said Modafferi, adding “I think we may be short in utilities though after looking at the year end.”

He said that Tier 1 employee rates are up to 25.8 percent of a person’s salary.

“My main concern is that our budget is getting closer and closer to actual … there’s no room in there for increasing utility costs. There’s no room in there for cold, cold winters. There’s no room in there for anything. In January, when we get our new rates for health insurance, if that goes up double digits, I’m in trouble because I didn’t build (the budget) that way.”

Fund Balance

“The truth of the matter is, out of the $200,000 of fund balance that we had put into this budget to make it balance, we used almost $150,000. That means that at the end of last year, we only had $386,000 left in the fund balance. Of that $386,000 we already appropriated $150,000 for this year’s budget,” said Modaferri, referring to it as a ‘tightrope situation.’

He had a few recommendations going into next year’s budget. He said the first thing the board needs to do is make up $150,000 that won’t be able to be put into next year’s budget for fund balance. However, the tax cap is around a $55,000 increase.

“My recommendation right now is to take this year’s budget and going forward discuss what you can do to reduce this year’s expenses so we don’t use up all the fund balance that we put forward. I can’t see, unless you do drastic changes, how you can stay below the 2 percent cap with the (ongoing issues of) the air conditioner unit.”

He added that he doesn’t believe a school district library can borrow money on its own.

Options

  • “One of the situations you may want to consider … is if you come up with a major capitol program, put everything together in one package, (get approval from the school district), and then go to the public and go out for a 10 or 15 year bond,” said Modafferi.
  • Reduce services and programs.
  • "Or you can eek it away little by little by going over the 2 percent cap."

Capital Project

Modaferri suggested that the board put together a package and go out for a capital program. If the board didn’t want to go out for a very large bond to build a new library or completely overhaul and renovate the existing one, they would need to get “a couple hundred thousand dollars, at least, in capital projects. There are capital things here that won’t work without taking care of it.”

These items include the leaky roof , route: {:controller=>"articles", :action=>"show", :id=>"leaky-roof-damages-books-at-nanuet-library"} -->and problematic

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