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|Early voting underway for library tax renewal|
Forty-nine early votes had been counted at the Registrar of Voters office by mid-morning today (Wednesday) for the parishwide library tax renewal.
Early voting for the election began July 5 and ends Saturday, July 12th, according to Registrar of Voters Golda Ensminger. The Registrar's office has been relocated downstairs in the new courthouse directly beneath the old office.
Concordia voters will go to the polls July 19th to decide whether to renew the 10-year, 8.5-mill property tax for the Concordia Parish Library.
The tax generates about $850,000 per year for maintenance, repair, improvements, operations and other areas of support for the library system parishwide.
Library director Amanda Taylor offered the following information on the millage:
• The tax will continue to fund three branches and one bookmobile.
• Since 1928, the library has been funded through a dedicated property tax.
• The Library Board administers the millage. Board members serve without pay and hold six open meetings a year in different areas of the parish.
• No property tax is paid by citizens with houses valued at $75,000 or less due to Homestead Exemption.
• The library is dependent on 93 percent of its funding from this local property tax.. State and federal revenues amount to about four percent. Donations, grants, and fees amount to approximately three percent.
Taylor said the library has no alternative funds for operation and does not receive financial support from any other agency.
• More than 10,000 citizens have new bar-coded library cards. Usage for the last 10 years (1997-2007) included 1,042,217 pieces of information circulated, and 3,293 programs provided. A total of 142,763 citizens attended library programs and 12O,OOO citizens used the internet at the library.
• The millage will be placed on the 2009 tax roles, and the money will be received by the library for the fiscal year 2010 budget.
• The millage provides books and library materials, insurance, postage, and utilities (costs adjusted for inflation for the next 10 years), the latest technological advancements, a continuation of maintenance and upkeep of present facilities, improvements in staffing, facilities and materials to meet state standards and the myriad services and programs presently provided by the facility parishwide.
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