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Morristown Public Library seeks public support to fill $10,000 budget gap

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MORRISTOWN — The Morristown Public Library is appealing to community members to authorize a 40 percent tax increase when they go to the polls on May 20 in order to make up a $10,000 budget gap.

Library Director Bridget C. Whalen-Nevin published the library’s projected revenues and expenses on the website at www.morristownpubliclibrary.org.

Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said the library will require 60 percent of the public to vote on its behalf in order for them to achieve the increase in revenue.

The total projected operating budget for the library in the 2014-15 fiscal year is roughly $40,000, Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said. “That’s not a lot of money.”

The library’s projected revenues are just under $33,000.

Included in that figure is $20,500 in salary, $2,600 for programs and $1,250 for maintenance.

Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said the library is “an open book. We do not have secrets.”

In 2013 the library had a circulation of 7,220 items and a registration of 797 active patrons. It saw 5,665 people come through its doors.

Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said the library sponsored 124 programs in 2013 that had, in total, 2,022 people attend.

In addition, the library’s computers were used 2,281 times, Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said, adding that the library was open for a total of 1,612 hours in 2013.

In order to help make up the budget gap, Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said she plans on applying for as many grants as possible.

“I am a very active grant writer,” Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said. “Last year in grants we received roughly $4,000.”

Mrs. Whalen-Nevin said she invites members of the community to review the library’s finances at any time.

“We don’t grow unless we can maintain the growth. That’s our commitment,” she said.

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