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Issues
Curtis Memorial Library
Some questions about the library

 

At their meeting on January 5, 2005, the Budget Advisory Committee decided with no dissension to recommend funding the Curtis Memorial Library at $0.00 instead of the requested ($~95,000?). I did not hear the entire discussion, nor do I remember everything that was said. I have requested the tape so I can hear it.

In the meantime I have decided to come up with some information about Curtis Library and our relationship with it.

  1. How many people from Harpswell took out library materials last year  How many items did these people borrow?

  2. What kinds of materials did they borrow?

  3. Maybe 2003 was special. How many borrowers have there been during the last 15 years.

  4. Did Harpswell residents make any private donations?

  5. If Harpswell chose not to contribute to the library, and the town bought cards for those that wanted them, how much could Harpswell save?

  6. Harpswell does not need Curtis Library because there are libraries in Cundy’s Harbor and Orr’s Island?

  7. At the BAC meeting someone said that if they could not find a book at the local library they could get it from Curtis Library, or the State Library.  

(Many more questions are coming)

1.      How many people from Harpswell took out library materials last year

From Feb 03-Feb 04, 1384 different Harpswell residents borrowed materials for themselves or someone in their family. That is 17% of the municipally funded borrowers (Brunswick, Harpswell)

2.      How many items did these people borrow?

During 2003 they borrowed over 34,000 books or 18% of the Brunswick-Harpswell total, Cundy's Harbor Library has a total of about 4,000 books

3.      What kinds of materials did they borrow?

They borrowed books, magazines, sets of audiotapes, compact disks, and videotapes.

4.      Maybe 2003 was special. How many borrowers have there been during the last 15 years.

The average umber over these years was 1817 Harpswell residents, and ranged from a low of 1350 to 2316. These numbers are higher than above because each year represents a three year period.

5.      Did Harpswell residents make any private donations?

Harpswell residents donated over $9,500.00 or 18% of the Brunswick-Harpswell total to Curtis Library’s Annual. Also 16% of the Friends of the Library are from Harpswell.

6.      If Harpswell chose not to contribute to the library, and the town bought cards for those that wanted them, how much could Harpswell save?

Library cards could well cost $100 a piece, if Harpswell opts of Curtis library. From February 2003-February 2004 there were over 1350 card holders from Harpswell. At $100 per card that comes to $135,000. $50,000 won't go very far.

7.      Harpswell does not need Curtis Library because there are libraries in Cundy’s Harbor and Orr’s Island?

There is no non-school library for children or adults on Harpswell Neck or Great Island (except CH).

These libraries provide a wonderful service as a place for people to meet and to find videos and recreational or children's books. They are not meant to provide the depth of books available at Curtis Library

Also, Curtis Library provides some of the materials and services at these libraries. These will have to be paid for by the libraries, if we do not fund Curtis.

8.      At the BAC meeting someone said that if they could not find a book at the local library they could get it from Curtis Library, or the State Library.

This is not true without the expenditure of more money because the local libraries would have to belong to Minerva, the interlibrary loan system (which normally comes with membership in Curtis.) It will be possible to join SOLAR as a way to get books from another library.

 

 

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Last edited on 01/07/2010