Monday, November 16, 2009

Cedarburg City-Town Service Disagreements Impact Library

Screen shot from City of Cedarburg website
Where the library link?

The library also doesn't make the list of "boasts" on the city's homepage.

Link to November 16 Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel article, "Town of Cedarburg drops some city services".

Excerpt: But the Town of Cedarburg last month abruptly ended talks on renewing a shared services contract covering library, recreation and senior programs for 2010 and beyond. The move came just weeks after the city and town agreed to negotiate a cooperative boundary plan that would limit future city annexations of town land.

Town Administrator Jim Culotta said the shared services agreement for the three programs was not mutually beneficial so the Town Board got out of it.

"Under the current plan, the town has been paying a disproportionate amount for the programs," Culotta said. "We've been paying more than our fair share since most town residents don't use the city's recreational programs and most don't use city senior services."

And the town has been paying too much to the
city library, Culotta said. Since 2003, his records indicate that the town paid about 36% of library costs though town residents made up just 22% of users

The city had offered to reduce the town's payments for the three programs in 2010, Mayor Greg Myers said. He is disappointed town officials walked away from a possible deal.

Myers said there is little time now to consider cooperation on borders as he and others scramble to fill a deep hole of more than $181,000 in their 2010 budget from the loss of the shared services payments.

The city library will take the biggest hit, with a $101,000 drop in revenue from one year to the next, Myers said.

He huddled Thursday with city Administrator Christy Mertes to consider their options.

The library will be open fewer hours during the week and will cut spending, but staff also might be facing several unpaid furlough days in 2010, Mertes said.

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