CUYAHOGA FALLS — The Cuyahoga Falls Library Board of Trustees on Jan. 24 approved the library’s 2017 general fund budget.

“The total budget is the same as the 2016 budget,” said Falls Library Fiscal Officer Susan Finley.  “We were very conservative because we do not know what the (state’s Public Library Fund money) will be after June.”

State lawmakers will this summer adopt a new biennial budget that will take effect July 1 and run through June 30, 2019. The new state budget could have an impact on the amount of money the library receives from the Public Library Fund, according to Finley.

Finley said she is projecting $2.825 in incoming revenues, with $1.37 million coming from the Public Library Fund and $1.38 million expected to be collected from the library’s local property tax levy.

Finley noted that an additional $659,000 from the end of 2016 was carried over into the 2017 budget. She added the budget does not project a carryover for the conclusion of 2017.

The library’s budget earmarks $2.825 million in expenses. As part of that amount, $1.27 million is set aside for employee salaries, $230,000 for insurance benefits, $182,000 for retirement benefits, $130,000 for property maintenance repair and $114,500 for professional services, according to information provided by Finley.

All library employees received a 2.5 percent pay raise starting on Jan. 8. The library has 23 full-time employees and 15 part-time workers. The raise was given to all union employees through a contract that the board approved in January 2016, said Finley, who noted the Board in December 2016 agreed to grant the same 2.5 percent pay hike to library management. The union employees’ contract runs through Dec. 31, 2018.

In the budget, Finley said she is planning for a 10 percent increase in health insurance costs in 2017. Those expenses increased by 8 percent and seven percent in 2016 and 2015, respectively. The library’s new health insurance contract for its employees begins July 1.


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