Discovered this totally amazing site that lets you calculate – down to the penny – how much money your local public library saves you every year. Awesome! I discovered it last week when I was perusing my own public library’s site, which was recently redesigned.
How much do you use your library – in dollars?
Here’s how to use this site.
1. Start by hopping onto this page.
2. In the left column, enter the number of times per month that you or your family use each service. For instance, we check out about 20 children’s books per month.
3. The site has assigned a value to each book or video or service you use. For instance, it estimates the value of a borrowed hardcover adult book at $18. See all the estimates here.
3. The total value of how much money you’ve saved by borrowing items and using computers and taking your kids to library programs is totaled at the bottom of the worksheet.
How many dollars of value are you getting out of your library?
My total use came to $743. Which didn’t seem like a lot until I remembered that is how much my library saves me PER MONTH. So my yearly savings, thanks to my library, totals $8,916.
If you like in Rhode Island, you can see how your use translates into tax dollars. For every $1 in state taxes we pay, we get $248 of value in return.
Whether you use your library or not, you are supporting them with tax dollars. So you may as well get the most out of your investment and check out all your local library has to offer.
Where did these numbers come from?
The RI state tax dollars were determined from the library’s 2007 local income per capita, which includes the local appropriation and state grant-in-aid. The values assigned to each book or video checked out come from the Maine State Library’s Library Use Value Calculator, which I linked to above. The calculator was developed by the Library Research Service of the Colorado State Library.
Want to ask your local library to add a calculator to their site?
Follow these clear directions provided by the Library Research Service at the Colorado State Library – just insert the appropriate values for your state public libraries. If you have questions, please contact OLIS.
Michelle Turchin Ventresca says
Very rarely do I buy a book, unless I know I’m going to keep it forever. For example, any book that I want about the Beatles I will buy and keep it and eventually my kids will get it…..The library has been a staple in my life since my children were born 38 years ago. It’s been invaluable to our family.