TDL ‘irresponsible’ for failing to show how millage was needed

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To the Editor,

Please cue the violins and bring in the cheese and crackers. The TDL board’s response to Mr. Abraham notes a fund decrease in 2010 and 2011 like it was something terrible. The negative change in 2010/11 was a direct impact of the “planned” $800,000 TDL remodeling. Please note that the majority of the $800,000 came from our tax dollars not from endowments as stated in the editorial response. The TDL is managing our tax dollars and I would expect them to be a lot more transparent in reporting what they do, and plan to do, with our tax dollars.

Managing the finances of a library is not rocket science. The customer base is very stable and the overhead costs are also very stable. During the 2003 to 2013 period there was major expenditures planned and executed for facility remodeling and upgrading the computer capabalities. Does TDL have a new five or 10 year plan that shows how our tax dollars are going to be spent?

There will not be another $800,000 remodeling project. Will that offset just go into the “emergency” fund?

I can do the math based on the editorial’s comments about June reporting versus December tax receivables versus 2013 liabilities and that is still a lot of cash sitting in the bank doing nothing. Why aren’t portions of the $1.2 mil in cash invested and why is all of it un-insured? On a pure “customer service” front, why is the salary to books and media bought ratio $6 to $1? Why isn’t that ratio more in the $4-5 to $1 ratio which is more appropriate for a library like TDL?

I would like to know the answers to some of these questions rather than see large ads imploring for more money without giving real facts as to why those tax dollars are needed. The TDL site at www.vote4tdl.com is very nice but there are no real facts shown there supporting the need for more money. Inferring that the library will fail without proof that the added tax dollars are really needed is irresponsible.

Shawn McBurney
Tecumseh




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