LOCKPORT – The Lockport Public Library unveiled a proposed 2013-2014 budget last week that includes a tax increase of 2 percent, director Beverly Federspiel said.
Registered voters who live in the Lockport City School District will be able to vote on the increase from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 10 in the library, 23 East Ave.
“We are considered a school district library. People within the school district pay the tax,” Federspiel said.
That means property owners in the entire City of Lockport, most of the Town of Lockport, and parts of Cambria and Pendleton.
The new rates won’t be known until assessment rolls are completed in each of those municipalities. Last year’s tax rates for the library were 97 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation in the city and town of Lockport and in Cambria, and $1 per assessed thousand in Pendleton.
The library tax is collected on the school tax bills, although the school district has no say in the library budget.
Federspiel said the proposed budget includes no new programs or personnel. Actually, one of the library’s 42 employees is retiring and won’t be replaced.
“With all the [cost] increases, we’re trying to maintain services and live within our means,” Federspiel said.
Fourteen of the 42 workers are full-time, Federspiel said.
The tax increase is smaller than last year’s 2.39 percent, which raised the total amount collected by the library tax by $32,000. This year’s proposed levy increase is $27,387, which would bring the total library tax collection to $1,376,120.
The library’s total proposed budget of $1.6 million increases spending by $22,133, which is about $4,000 less than last year’s increase.
The Niagara County Board of Elections is allowing the library to use the old lever voting machines for its referendum. But absentee ballots are available at the library. They must be postmarked by April 9 to be counted.