Addressing DeKalb Public Library’s proposed 14%-plus levy increase

During DeKalb’s public hearing on its property tax levy, which includes the library’s levy, several people spoke out about the library’s plan to increase its take by more than 14%. They requested the city council hold library trustees accountable for the request, which they view as irresponsible. DeKalb claims that it must approve any levy…

Regarding DeKalb Library’s other loan

Here’s an excerpt from my latest at DeKalb County Online: Thanks to recent discussion of DeKalb Public Library’s plan to pay back taxpayers for emergency help with its expansion project, much of DeKalb knows about DKPL’s $4.5 million bank loan to keep construction going during Illinois’ budget impasse. Not many know about the bank loan…

Mayor’s statement about DeKalb Public Library’s tax promises

Mayor Smith came out this week in support of calls for DeKalb Public Library to keep its 2015 promises to repay taxpayers, and says he is confident the DKPL board “will do the right thing.” Related: DeKalb County Online: DeKalb Public Library and its property tax promises City Barbs: Going deeper on DeKalb Public Library’s…

Going deeper on DeKalb Public Library’s expansion and promises

The main thing you need to know is that DeKalb Public Library made promises to DeKalb property taxpayers in 2015, and now is considering breaking its promises. But I couldn’t resist putting together some FAQs for anyone who might like more details. How much did the expansion cost? Total cost was $25.3 million. At center…

Library Budget Figures Look Pretty Interesting

An alert reader tipped me off that the DeKalb Public Library added about $10.5 million to its fund balance last year (see FY2013 column, bottom line; click & magnify to see it bigger). Nice, huh? Wherever did it come from? Let’s check the revenues. Hmmm. Not here, either — and we still have to account…

DeKalb Public Library and Greed

In a post from January 10, I told you I’d continue trying to get information about the state’s Public Library Construction Grant Program since we knew so few of the institutions that won them. Part of the reason it has taken so long to get back to you is that I goofed up my chance…

Library Supporters Not Trying Very Hard to Raise Private Money

Jolly. Oregon didn’t pass its library referendum so the state gave Oregon’s library construction grant of $3.1 million to DeKalb Public Library. So we’re back to the $24 million building plan. I’d feel better about the state’s grant program if the whole process weren’t rife with secrets, but since I decided not to fight the…

Library to Borrow $6 Million as Part of “Fundraising Strategy”

Once again let me express deep, deep skepticism that DeKalb Public Library will actually raise the stated goal of $6 million in private donations to contribute to its expansion costs. Witness the latest step toward putting it on the taxpayers. In order to meet a looming June 30 deadline, the DeKalb Public Library will borrow…

Library Talks to the City About Issuing Bonds for Its Expansion

Here’s the latest. DeKalb library leaders asked the DeKalb City Council on Monday if it would consider borrowing $7.5 million for the $24 million construction project, which would add 47,000 square feet to the 19,000-square-foot building at 309 Oak St. Library leaders need to secure $15.5 million by June 1 to qualify for an $8.5…

Be Prepared for a $24 Million Tab

The discussion about the city’s issuing bonds on behalf of DeKalb Public Library for its expansion starts at the Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday. In order to secure the $15.5M needed for the expansion, the Library has a plan of financing for City Council consideration. The Library will use $1M in Library fund…