To the Editor:
Here are some facts you didn’t see in the Crystal Lake Library’s “Annual Report” that you might want to consider when you go to the polls in November to vote on whether to raise your property taxes to build a new, $30 million library.
1. The trend in usage is sharply negative. Visits to the library are down 24 percent. Circulation is down 22 percent.
2. The Crystal Lake Library costs taxpayers $400 per family versus $176 in Cary and $160 in Woodstock.
3. Almost 40 percent of what the library lends is movies and video games, and last year it cost the taxpayers $6.50 per item circulated.
4. With the taxes for the new building, the cost could hit $10 per item circulated within two years.
So ask yourself a few questions. Will you borrow more books if they build a new library? If not, then what’s the real benefit to you, the taxpayer? If library use is declining, why double the size of the library? Why are we paying so much more for our library than other communities pay for the same services? When did the library stop being about books and become a taxpayer-subsidized competitor for RedBox and NetFlix? Why does the library spend four times as much as RedBox to circulate a movie? And why does the City Council keep appointing cheerleaders to the library board instead of taxpayer watchdogs?
Remember: if you don’t vote in November, your taxes will go up.