If you’re reading this relatively early in December you may have sufficient time to attend the library’s public 2014 proposed budget hearing, scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 4 at 10 a.m.

By Creed Kidd, Library Director

Public hearings can be at times under-attended and not very interesting; however, there are few better ways of getting a handle on how your library operates — where the priorities are, where the problems are, where the library is going. Following the money may not be dramatic but it is instructive.

Where is the money going this year? First, we preface that by the fact that there will be less of it. Revenue from Larimer County — your library property taxes — will be about 12 percent less next year. That should mean that without outside fundraising efforts services should diminish, more or less, about 12 percent next year.

It won’t quite happen like that for a couple of reasons: First, we’ll use money from our rainy-day fund to supplement the 2014 budget; second, the Friends of the Library will contribute proceeds from fundraising activities; and, while the operating budget will be reduced nonetheless, we’re going to make every effort to make your visit to the library next and every year comfortable, rewarding and seamless.

One very cost-effective library feature you’re already familiar with are library volunteers at the circulation desk, shelving materials or assisting with programs. Studies indicate that American volunteer hours are valued at $22 in 2013; to date this year $28,000 of value has accrued through their considerable efforts in your behalf at your library. We remain to a large extent a volunteer library and their — and your — efforts in the library’s behalf are appreciated.

We’ll close this month with comments from Friends President Sandy Lagow: Are you looking for the perfect gift for the holidays? Please consider making a donation to the Friends of the Red Feather Lakes Community Library. The library has proven over many years to be a very important part of the social fabric of the entire community, from Red Feather Lakes to Livermore.

Over the last few years, it has become more difficult for the library to continue to offer the many programs it provides to both children and adults of the community. The Friends organization exists solely to raise funds to supplement the operations of the library.

It would mean so much during this holiday season if you would consider including the library on your list of gifts. Donations can be made personally in the library or by sending a check to Friends of the RFLC Library, Box 617, Red Feather Lakes, CO 80545.

Any support you can give will be immensely appreciated.

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