Last Monday (June 25th) was the last Monday the award-winning Multnomah County Library (Portland, OR) was open and available to library users .
Beginning July 1st the library will be closed on Mondays.
Hours on other days are also changing. This page shows the changes by branch.
The tax levy we just approved in May kept awful budget cuts from turning drastic. but it wasn’t enough (even with the library dipping into its reserves and the county’s general fund offering a bailout) to stop the bleeding. And, so, this week, Multnomah County commissioners will take the first step toward creating an actual library taxing district, a “permanent and stable” source of revenue.
Multnomah County commissioners have scheduled five “listening” sessions to hear public views about a potential library district, which would raise property taxes while providing more stable funding for county libraries.
The potential library district would bill property owners a maximum of $1.22 in property taxes for each $1,000 in assessed value. That’s $183 for owners of a home assessed at $150,000, the current county median for tax valuation. Half would pay more and half would pay less.
A library district would have ongoing authority to collect property taxes dedicated to libraries, replacing a series of temporary property tax levies that provide the bulk of library funding. A district also would free up money in the county general fund that has supplemented the levies.
What About Circulation?
Multnomah County Library is second in circulation only to New York Public Library, according to the most recent statistical report of the Public Library Data Service, and has the hardest-working collection of library materials among large libraries in the U.S.