Monday, May 12, 2014

This Hardly Qualifies as Library Collection Development on a Shoestring

‘We’re all hitting the same wall’: Maine’s community libraries seek funds to stay open. (Bangor Daily News, 5/12/2014)

About the Cherryfield Free Public Library
  • Founded in 1837
  • Organized as private, nonprofit library
  • Number of patrons:  475 (not including those using computer, wifi)
  • Weekly visits:  100 (double in the summer)
  • Weekly circulations:  50

11 new books in 2014.  The operating budget [of the Cherryfield Free Public Library] does not include spending for adding new materials or equipment. In fact, the library usually adds to its collection annually but made no plans to do so this year for the first time. However, the board of trustees took a special vote to authorize a $250 order of 11 books recently.

Source:  Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS),

Maine's public libraries fall into 2 of the 8 IMLS legal-basis categories.  The other 6 are:
  1. County
  2. City/county
  3. Multijurisdictional
  4. School district
  5. Library district
  6. Other (tribal, combined public/school)

Other states with a significant percentage of association libraries, which are defined by the IMLS as "a public library that is privately controlled but meets the statutory definition of a public library in a given state."
  • Pennsylvania (85.5%)
  • Rhode Island (50.0%)
  • New York (47.0%)
  • Connecticut 45.4%)
  • Vermont (35.8%)
Overall, 13.9% of U.S. public libraries fall into this category.

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