Mount Sterling Library on Nov. 4 ballot

(Posted Oct. 23, 2014)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

Mount Sterling Public Library hopes the community will pass the first-ever local tax levy for the library’s operating expenses.

The library is on the Nov. 4 ballot for a five-year, 0.4-mill property tax. The levy would cost $14 per year ($1.16 per month) for the owner of a home valued at $100,000.

Currently, the library receives funding only from the state general revenue fund. Since 2008, the library’s state funding has declined 23 percent, requiring cuts in library staffing, hours and book purchases. Current library funding stands at 1996 levels.

“Between 50 and 60 percent of the levy money will be used to replenish the funds we’ve lost since 2008,” said library Director Christopher Siscoe.

With the levy’s passage, the library could increase its service hours and restore its materials budget for books, magazines, audio books, DVDs and music CDs.

“The rest of the levy funds will be used to update the building and help us to afford to expand into digital collections and support our bookmobile service,” Siscoe said.

Building updates would include mandatory conversion to energy efficient light fixtures and addressing the aging furnaces, roof, carpet and elevator.

“Madison County has a long tradition of supporting library services and seeing libraries as assets to the community,” Siscoe said. “There are three libraries in the county—Mount Sterling, London and Hurt-Battelle in West Jefferson—that have been in service for over 100 years. We (at the Mount Sterling Public Library) continue to prove our relevance to the people throughout the Madison-Plains area.”

Mount Sterling Public Library’s service area consists of the entire Madison-Plains Local School District, including the village of Mount Sterling and Union, Fairfield, Paint, Oak Run, Stokes, Range and Pleasant townships.

Library patrons have access to not only the library’s 45,000 items, but also many thousands more through the library’s membership in Serving Every Ohioan, a group of 200 libraries statewide.

Mount Sterling Public Library is located at 60 W. Columbus St. and online at Hours are: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday and Wednesday; 12-7 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday; 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Friday and Saturday. For more information, call (740) 869-2430.


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