September 3, 2015
UPDATE: Library millage rate of .284 to allow for increased budget with a flat millage passes with NO OPPOSITION.
Thank you for your continued support, library lovers!
Call/Write your commissioners and thank them for their votes -- and encourage them to continue to support the fight for a world-class library system!
September 2, 2015
Two fiscal years ago, you, Miami-Dade County, set the bar for how the people could descend upon county hall and demand their right to world-class services from our elected officials.
Yesterday, Commissioners reviewed the budget plan that calls for an increase in some special taxing districts, including that of the Library – where we could possibly gain increased library hours (moving 10 5-day branches to 6-day operations) and an increased materials budget for books and e-resources that had been dismally cut over the years.
“‘Xavier Suarez, a county commissioner also considering a run against Gimenez in 2016, criticized the consequences of past spending cuts to the library system under the mayor’s tenure. “We gutted the library system of Miami-Dade three years ago,” Suarez said. “We still have some libraries that don’t open on Saturdays.””
This Thursday, come down to county hall once more to voice your support for this budget of .284 mills. Remind your elected officials that we are only on the up-and-onward path to repair the cuts from 3 years ago.
There is still more work to be done on our libraries – more hours to be open, and still yet more services that could be provided. But from the rebuilding of a slashed infrastructure, with your support, with our commissioners’ support, can come the world-class library that we have fought for for years.
August 5 2015
Speak on behalf of the support for the increased library budget at the Budget Town Hall Meetings!
Two are slated for libraries: West Kendall Regional Library and Arcola Lakes Library.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez will host Budget Town Hall Meetings throughout the month of August, where residents will be able to ask Mayor Gimenez and staff about the FY 2015-2016 Proposed Budget.
Monday, August 10, 2015, at 6 p.m.
404 West Palm Drive
Florida City, Florida 33034
Tuesday, August 11, 2015, at 6 p.m.
West Kendall Regional Library
10201 Hammocks Boulevard
Miami, Florida 33196
Wednesday, August 12, 2015, at 6 p.m.
Village of Palmetto Bay
9705 East Hibiscus Street
Palmetto Bay, Florida 33157
Thursday, August 13, 2015, at 6 p.m.
City of Aventura
19200 West Country Club Drive
Aventura, Florida 33180
Tuesday, August 18, 2015, at 6 p.m.
Milander Center for Arts and Entertainment
4800 Palm Ave
Hialeah, Florida 33012
Thursday, August 20, 2015, at 6 p.m.
Arcola Lakes Branch Library
8240 NW 7 Avenue
Miami, Florida 33150
Tuesday, August 25, 2015, at 6 p.m.
City of Miami Gardens
18605 NW 27 Avenue
Miami Gardens, Florida 33056
Thursday, August 27, 2015, at 6 p.m.
West Dade Regional Library
9445 Coral Way
Miami, Florida 33165
July 16, 2015
Another win for your libraries for FY'15'-16, with nearly a $7 million increase in revenue to improve upon hours, collection, facility maintenance -- and much more.
The past three years of advocacy have led up to this moment.
On July 14, in the BCC, while the libraries were not front and center (constituents had protested and came in huge numbers to fight the good fight for Pets and for fair development of the Miami World Center in Overtown), our community efforts to support and invigorate the library system was evident when each and every commissioner mentioned it! Commissioner Barbara Jordan and newly elected Commissioner Levine-Cava, avid supporters of the library, even commented that the library should have more funding to make the library itself whole again.
Thank you for your continued support, library lovers, and stay tuned for more updates as we move forward in our advocacy.
July 7, 2015
After nearly three years of fighting and fighting for recognition for the library budget -- things look to be on the upswing!
Via the Miami Herald: "Buoyed by an extra $122 million in property taxes, the 2016 spending plan breaks from the austerity themes that have defined Gimenez budgets since he came to office four years ago on a pledge to cut taxes. Facing reelection next year, his $6.8 billion budget highlights increased services and expanded hiring without any increase in property-tax rates, and even a planned hike in the debt tax has been scrapped for 2016, according to a copy of the three-volume budget."
From the increase in the tax roll, the Library will see a boost of $7 million in our current budget, while leaving the millage rate flat.
Some highlighted improved services to look forward to after October with the increase in the budget:
- Increasing 10 branch libraries from a 5-day per week service schedule to six days. The branches proposed are California Club, Coral Reef, Country Walk, Golden Glades, Hispanic, Homestead, International Mall, Kendall, Little River, and Pinecrest.
- Increasing the collections/materials budget from $3 million in the current year to $4 million in the coming fiscal year.
- 27 new full-time and 9 part-time Librarian positions are proposed to be hired to ensure proper staffing and service levels for the expanded hours and increased materials budget mentioned above.
- Rebuilding our contingency reserves, including a $1.4 million emergency reserve and a $200,000 grant match reserve.
- Increased funding for facility maintenance (aging buildings, broken down A/Cs, and more...)
Thank you for your continued support library lovers!
Now is the time to rally and join us on July 14 to encourage the Commissioners to support this budget!
Are you in?
CALM, Community Advocates for Libraries in Miami: A Political Action Committee and open group for all supporters of the Miami-Dade Public Library System.
Our Mission is to be the collective proponents of full-funding for our Libraries so that they may be maintained and improved upon for the years to come.
49 library branches plus 2 bookmobiles serve the entire Miami-Dade County, and welcome all visitors through their doors--including over 7 million in 2012.
It is the belief of CALM that the Miami-Dade Public Libraries are not simply a hub of information and technology; our Libraries are the heart of our community, and our staff are the heart within them. Our Libraries provide access to culture, recreation, education, and encourage lifelong learning in all people.