Port Washington Public Library proposes $7.8M budget

Port Washington Public Library proposes $7.8M budget
Port Washington Public Library (Photo courtesy of PWPL).

The Port Washington Public Library is proposing a nearly $7.8 million budget with a 2% tax increase for 2025 as residents prepare to vote on the budget next week.

The library drafted a 2024-2025 budget proposal of $7,794,101, a 3.9% increase from the current budget of $7.5 million.

The library’s 2% tax increase is the second time it has risen in the past six years after many years of keeping a flat tax rate.

“As we look to the future, we will strive to enhance the lives of our families, friends, and the Port Washington community,” Library Board of Trustees President William Keller wrote.

Keller said the budget was drafted with economic factors, maintaining facility conditions and community needs in mind.

Employee benefits are projected to increase by about 7.12% for the library in 2025, with another 7.09% increase for salaries. Combined, this amounts to a 7%.1% budget increase.

Expenses for library materials are budgeted for a slight decrease of $6,000, with $471,000 allotted in 2025.

Also decreasing in budgeted expenses are building operations, which will be falling by 2.98% with $390,370 budgeted.

Library operations, however, would be increasing under the 2025 draft budget. Library operations are budgeted at $678,000, a 2.73% increase.

The library’s expenditures amount to $7,625,640, but also include $156,350 for equipment, repairs and transfers and another $12,111 for debt service, bringing the total expenditures to $7,794,101.

While costs are increasing, Keller said energy costs for the library have dropped since completion of the roof repair and facade renovation. He said these projects will also diminish weather damage.

Revenues for 2025 are projected to be $7,638,101, which will be combined with about $1 million from the library’s fund balance to match all budgeted expenses.

The library is projecting ending the 2024 fiscal year with $1,238,927 in its unassigned fund balance.

For the 2024 budget, the library approximated $7,434,533 but is now projecting actual revenue of $7,573,217 by the end of the fiscal year on June 30. This would be another year with revenues higher than projected as was achieved from 2021-2023 as well.

Residents within the library’s district can vote on the budget on April 9 from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the library. They will also be able to vote for a trustee, with Trustee Adrienne Saur running unopposed to be re-elected for a five-year term beginning in July.

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