West Richland voters should vote no for the proposed new library tax due to excessive library costs.
Mid Columbia Libraries’ contract with the city is based on city valuation — not population or number of library users. Consequently, the contract cost increases due to new residential and commercial/industrial construction. One major commercial/industrial facility located in West Richland could significantly increase library costs if library service continues under the contract. I believe it is misleading to simply tell voters the current utility tax is not enough to keep current library services because of dropped landline telephones and lower electrical consumption.
The city owns the library building and is responsible for the cost of personnel, supplies and services necessary to maintain and operate the building, at a proposed 2017-2018 budget cost of $132,519. The proposed budget cost for MCL library service is an additional $846,074.
The city’s contract with MCL expires Dec. 31, 2018, allowing time for city officials to give voters options to keep our library open.
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Peggy Panisko, West Richland