GRATIS —The Marion Lawrence Library in Gratis will send a 1-mill property tax for five years to residents who live in the village limits on Tuesday, Nov. 3 when voters go to the polls in Preble County.
The levy, according to Roberta Raps, a trustee of the library, will cost approximately $1.46 per month, per property valued at $50,000, or $2.33 per month per $80,000 of property owned.
The tax is separate from the Preble County District Library levy renewal as the Marion Lawrence Library is separate from the district library.
Accord to Raps, the money will go to current expenses for the library. “This would allow us to maintain present programs and library hours,” she said.
She explained, “The funds would allow us to maintain internet and computer access for our patrons. In addition, we would be able to continue the upkeep of the small library park that so many people have enjoyed.”
Raps continued by saying, if the levy were to fail cuts will most likely come to the library’s operating hours and programs like the summer reading program.
Raps also said the purchase of books and DVDs would most likely be reduced.
“All libraries in Ohio have been faced with a reduction in the amount of money the state has allotted to them from the general revenue fund,” she said, noting, the Gratis Marion Lawrence Library is the only library in the county operating without a property tax.
Raps said the majority of those using the library have been supportive of the levy and believe having a library in the village is important.
“With the passage of this levy most property owners will pay less per month than the price of a Big Mac,” Raps said. “Having a library in our village is worth that. The library has served Gratis for 75 years and hopes to continue.”
Reach Austin Schmidt at 937-683-4062 or on Twitter @aschmidt_RH.