By T. Scott Boatright
It didn’t take long for the Lincoln Parish Library Board of Control to come up with a millage rate request for the Oct. 9 tax election during a special meeting Thursday afternoon at the LPL Events Center.
After a short explanation by Laura Hartt, who assists LPPJ administrator and interim treasurer Doug Postel, was briefly questioned by board members, the Board of Control voted 9-0 (board member Richard Durrett abstained his vote because of his role as a Lincoln Parish police juror) to recommend Hartt’s proposal to submit to the Lincoln Parish Police Jury a request of a 4.49 millage in hopes the LPPJ will approve adding that request to the October election when it holds its monthly meeting set for Tuesday.
After a request to renew its previous millage rate of 5.85 during an election held last December as turned down by voters, the LPL Board of Control was forced to try and come up with a new funding structure for the future.
The previous millage rate of 5.99 was renewed by parish voters for 10 years in 2010.
When it was requested last year, the 5.85-mill renewal request was projected to bring in $2.7 million annually for the library.
After its defeat last December, the library reduced its 2021 budget to $2 million.
The proposed amended budget presented on Thursday by Hartt stands at $2,225,775 in revenue, the number she used to come up with the proposed 4.49 millage request. That includes $2,157,772 in ad valorem taxes
Hartt said that staff cuts were a primary mechanism in lowering the library’s new proposed budget after last December’s election in which the millage renewal request failed.
She said the proposed 2021 amended budget includes 11 staff cuts, with nine layoffs and two , one previously scheduled retirement and one upcoming retirement. Neither of those position spots will be filled in an attempt to cut more of the budget by attrition.
Those moves leave Hartt’s proposed amended library budget with $674,724 worth of salary expenditures and $67,991 in wages.
In total, Hartt’s amended 20121 budget shows $1,867,280 in total expenditures.