Friday, May 6, 2011

Time and Money Running Out for Des Plaines Bookmobile

Des Plaines Library may cut bookmobile in 2012. (Daily Herald, 5/5/2011)

  It costs Des Plaines $132,660 annually — roughly 2 percent of the total library budget — to operate the mobile library, housed in a 36-foot-long bus carrying a collection of roughly 13,000 items. The collection includes popular fiction and nonfiction books for adults and children, music CDs, audiobooks, DVDs and magazines. Des Plaines has been providing the service for 14 years.

The bookmobile’s circulation for 2009 was 51,612, while the main library’s was 1.2 million for the same year. In 2010, the bookmobile’s circulation dipped to 48,333, while the main library’s remained unchanged.

The bus makes 40 stops monthly during the school year, and 32 during summer, hitting each stop twice a month. The bookmobile is used mainly by youth, who make up 65 percent of checkouts.

Yet the bookmobile is more than just a mini library on wheels. The jobs of three part-time staff members — collectively earning roughly $81,000 annually in salary and benefits — are tied into its operation, Rozovics said.

Those employees will likely be let go

Related articles:
Des Plaines Public Library to City Council:  "Your love is like a see-saw".  (11/3/2010)
Library to remain open with limited hours, minimum staffing.  (10/30/2010)
'Back to basics' sez mayor to library.  (10/19/2010)
A bleak December may be in store for Des Plaines Public Library users.  (10/14/2010)
Mayor grouses about library's possible need for loan.  (9/29/2010)
Mayor offers veiled threat to library board.  (10/27/2009; note comment.)

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