Troy Public Library

Your Partner in Creating a Vibrant and Prosperous Community

Troy Library Millages Fail

Cathy Russ - Posted on

The staff of the Troy Public Library would like to thank everyone who voted November 2 in support of the Library. All four of the Library funding proposals failed.

(Updated information: May 17, 2011)

The Library is scheduled to close on June 30, 2011. We will post updates regarding any changes to Library operations on this website.

For full election results, visit these websites:

City of Troy Library Proposal Results
Oakland County Election Division

Other area library millage results:

Passed
Belleville: .7 for 12 years
Beverly Hills: less than 1 mill
Dexter: .6925 for 6 years
Eastpointe: .1135 for 5 years
Harper Woods: 1 for 7 years
Inkster: 2 for 10 years
Milford: .38 for 10 years
Northville: .2 for 5 years
Ypsilanti: .38 in perpetuity

Failed
Bloomfield Hills:.671 for 6 years

Comments

Submitted by Jenny (not verified) on

There is an article "How to Analyze a Neighborhood Before You Buy" one of the suggestions is this: 
2. Look at Public Services: With property taxes falling, many towns and cities are having to cut back on the public services they offer. Parks, libraries and police often get the ax first. Drive through a potential neighborhood, and then through the town, and look carefully for clues that the city is having financial trouble. Are the streets clean? Are the parks in good condition? Is the grass cut? Check the library as well. Have they had to cut their hours? You could also ask the librarians about the neighborhood and town as well. They're often a gold mine of information.

Submitted by Probir (not verified) on

We just moved in to Troy early last year and I am really disappointed to see that the library is closing. I don't know of any other city like Troy (above average income, above average education, etc.) that does not have a public library. To me, a public library is not just a basic service expected from an average city but through its different programs it also shows the true characteristics of a city. It seems residents are ok with spending $5/day for Starbucks coffee but are not willing to spend an extra 50 cents a day for a library that opens a world of knowledge to their kids. What a shame! I regret buying a house in Troy.

Submitted by Wondering (not verified) on

Someone told me today that they are sure TPL will not close.  Is there something in the works or in the news that I have missed?  This would be great for the City!

Submitted by Kevin (not verified) on

I would like to appeal to vote that Mayor Schilling, and Councilmen Kerwin, McGinnis, and Slater are to be fired from their positions for not supporting the library. I pay taxes and want to use the library as a service. If I can't then I don't want a mayor or his team taking our money for their salaries and we get nothing in return.

Submitted by Concerned... (not verified) on

I guess this community is really sending a positive message to the kids...just saying...  How can a city like Troy loose its ability to fund its library?  I am new to this community and it is the library and other services that brought me here...  If that goes I am sure people and other things go too as a result...  Who is doing the long range planning here?  I see a McDonalds  within two miles of another McDonalds...  Are they closing too?  I bet not.  Well, hopefully someone defines what a "community" is or at least understands the core principles of one...  If you need to know, play Facebook's "Cityville", you might learn a thing or two...

Concerned

Submitted by Liz (not verified) on

There seems to be a lack of new comments lately.  Could it be because it is not located on the first page of the web site as it used to be. 

I like to read what other Troy residents are thinking.  I learned about Keep Troy Strong here.  A great forum for people who love the library.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

I think everyone is waiting for the Troy City Council to make the next move. 

It is all up to just 1 of the 4 Council members who voted to close the library...... to change her vote.

If we can get just "1"  of Schilling, Kerwin, Slater.... or McGinnis to switch her vote  to keep the library, then

we get to keep the library.

If all 4 of Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, or McGinnis continue to vote to keep the library closed, then

there is nothing to be done until those 4 are up for re-election.

It does not look good, because Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and McGinnis have so far refused to

re-consider the option of keeping the Troy Library open.

Those 4 have continually been refusing to even just discuss keeping the Troy Library until late January - which is virtually too late.

Those 4 have refused to reconsider the budget until late January, which means that those 4 are making sure that there will only be 3 months time to cut spending elsewhere and keep the Troy Library open - and that is not much of a window.

The only thing that can be done now, is to call and write Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and McGinnis and put pressure on them to get 1 of them to switch sides with those of us who want to keep the Troy Library.

Submitted by Jennifer (not verified) on

I agree that the comments have stopped since this article is no longer on the home page. I think this is important enough to maintain a prominent position on the home page. 

Tonight we will hear this rhetoric:

-The people have a right to FREE LIBRARY! (not if we can't afford it!)

-2,500 people's desires must not be denied! (except those people were lied to so much, who knows what they wanted)

-Even though Kempen's Mandate Petition was lamely written, insufficiently considered and completely inappropriate, City Council must STILL accept it without quibbling! (nonsense!)

-The city hasn't even TRIED to cut the budget or staff, they are acting like it's business as usual (lie!)

-The city spent $2.5 million on the park and red bricks at Big Beaver and Rochester (no, the DDA did!)

-The will of the people! (They didn't care about the will of the people when they cheated to defeat Prop 1)

-Ed Kempen is a great patriot! (he's either none too bright or a total fraud)

-The City Manager makes too much money! (though less than they'll say)

-Pensions! (they are locked into contracts, which the city is trying to negotiate down)

-If the City Council accepts its attorney's advice and refuses to accept Kempen's Initiative, deciding to send it to a court for clarity, the City Council members are a bunch of: a) Communists, b) Liberals, c) Nazis, d) Totalitarians, and/or e) Dictators! (Well...all except Mr. Howrylak, of course.)

  But let's remember the facts.

-BEFORE Ed Kempen left the City Clerk's office with his initiative petition, he was informed that even if he got all the signatures he needed, the petition would be NON-BINDING, because it addresses an administrative, rather than a legislative issue. He knew that before he started. Apparently the purpose of the petition was only to DRAW VOTES AWAY from Proposal and confuse voters, which it certainly did.

-The city is following through on its claim that this petition is non-binding and taking the issue to court in order to avoid 1) having to fund the library and lay-off dozens more cops or 2) a $90,000 special election that Mr. Kempen's little ruse would require.

-For all Kempen's and TCU's concern over the "Will of the People," they weren't afraid to lie to voters signing the petition in good faith, by telling them the Kempen Initiative would "guarantee" the library would not close. Mr. Howrylak also said that in his letter to voters. That was NEVER true. It was always Kempen's Mandate to Nowhere. They simply wanted Proposal 1 to fail. 

-People signing the petition had no idea what it meant. I had people tell me excitedly that they had signed the "Friends of the Library petition," not realizing it was a TCU bait-and-switch scheme. 

-These cynics don't care. TCU leaders like Janice Daniels repeatedly said that having a library was no big deal. They even mocked the Citizens to Save the TPL for talking about children when it came to the library, as if that was political rhetoric--huh? 

-Ms. Daniels claimed that people buying homes in Troy cared only about the tax rate and NEVER asked about the library. Her sudden interest in libraries is too little, too late, especially after she personally did her best to kill Prop 1, the only initiative that would have saved the library.

-After the TCU cheated to defeat the 1.9 millage increase in February, no one from TCU attended the budget study sessions last spring to implore the city not to close the library. Therefore they learned nothing about why the City Council chose to do it. The real Friends of the Library attended and, with the information they learned, wrote and promoted Proposal 1. TCU then worked desperately to defeat Prop 1. By the way, don't think Mr. Howrylak knows too much about it either--he missed all those budget sessions too.

-In 2008 the people of Troy made a huge mistake by passing an amendment to our city charter capping our tax rate at 8.1 mills. The city isn't "out of money" due to mismanagement. Rather, because of our plummeting taxes/city revenue, the city can't affect the budget in any way other than to cut staff and our programs and amenities. The sad irony is, considering our shrinking budget, the city council was acting fiscally responsible by closing the library.

-The library has a budget threshold of about $2 million dollars. I've seen people recommend a $1.4 million library budget. They don't know what they're talking about. The council is not going to be able to scrape that kind of money out of the budget which is now shrinking even more than previously expected. 

-If given the choice to have no library and a full-service police force or a library and a part-time police force, what would you choose?

-Mr. Howrylak will fight desperately for the initiative NOT to go to a court for clarity. I believe he was sure he could play this two ways -- either the council accepted the initiative and Howrylak and Kempen won, or the council rejected the initiative and Howrylak would have claimed they were wasting money by sending this to a special election--but then he was planning to piggyback his brilliant 1/2-mill proposal on top of that special election and voila -- he would be hero. Yet, I think he remains nothing but the guy who put the final nail in the library's coffin.

There is no magic cure. There is no slush fund. There is no way to scrape enough money out of the budget to save the library.

The only way to save the library was Proposal 1 and TCU and Kempen and Howrylak saw to it that didn't happen.

So what's the plan now, Howrylak?

http://keeptroystrong.blogspot.com

Submitted by Liz (not verified) on

Not to worry. Janice Daniels gave her plan before the city council Monday to save the library after she worked hard to defeat Proposal 1.  She suggests all the overpaid city employees voluntarilly give back some of their salary.  PLEASE.  Without a gun to their head.  Mrs. Daniels that is your plan?

Submitted by Don Armstrong (not verified) on

It seems clear that 4 members of the Council have consistently voted to stop funding the library from the city's general fund.  This in spite of the fact that it has always been a part of the City's budget, and well over 90% of Troy citizens want to keep the Library.  The four who have voted to not fund the library are:  Mayor Schilling, and Councilmen Kerwin, McGinnis, and Slater.  Beltramini, Fleming, and Howrylak have repeatedly voted to fund the Library.  They are the true supports of the Troy Library.  The same four who voted the Library out of the budget plans also opposed Councilman's Flemings motion to schedule discussions of the needed budget changes at the 11/22 meeting.  The reasons sited were: It's too soon.  We need more information.  And, labor negotiations might be upset.   It seems to me that they want to delay this until they can scream crisis.  These four council members seem determined to remove all funding from the library.

But, we now have another way to keep the Library open.  Thanks to over 40 petition circulater's and 2500 signing citizens, they will soon be required to take another vote on including the Library in the budget soon.  And if they vote against the library again they will be forced to give the voters of Troy a chance to vote to modify the City Charter to keep the Library open.  That vote is required to occur before the library is scheduled to close.

Submitted by Literate Troy (not verified) on

Perhaps Mr. Howrylak would have voted on Option 1 as well, had he attended any of the budget study sessions or been there for the vote.

Yes, he was getting married to his wife at the time, but aren't weddings planned far in advance? Doesn't the city ALWAYS do these studies and votes on the budget at the same time.

If there's no money there's no money. Wishing won't make it so.

Submitted by Jennifer (not verified) on

How could Howrylak support the library when he rarely shows up at City Council meetings??

Submitted by Simone (not verified) on

If you remember, the budget passed last May which included reduced funding for the library this year--which cancelled all it programs, reduced hours they are open, and laid off 1/3 of the employees. I watched much of the budget city council meetings. None of the council members could find funding. They agreed to Option 1. Oh yes, they said it was sad to have to close the library but there was no funding in the budget. They ALL agreed.  And Councilmember Howrylak missed all except the final meeting.  And now he and Councilmember Fleming say they want to save the library, but again, they present no plan as to where to find the money. Dane Slater asked him on November 8, and there was no plan. Just more statements about no new taxes. $2 a week! Seriously. And if the millage passed (just needed 350 more people to vote yes, instead of no) it would have been an independent library with a board voted by city residents. Out of the hands of city council and city management.

And this petition to save the library with no new taxes: Do you know anything about it?  It calls for a library for 55 hours, not necessary the library we have now. It could be a room over at the community center with about 20 books. It was poorly written and poorly researched.  And according to the city attorney it is an administrative function and will be decided by city council http://www.freep.com/article/20101109/NEWS03/101109042/Citizens-file-petitions-to-save-Troy-library

You need to be more informed and not just believe the political comments by Councilmember Howrylak who now wants to be mayor and using this for publicity. He could have been vocal last year before 35 lives were ruined by losing their jobs, and the residents of Troy were no longer given access to programs at the library, and longer hours of operation. Obviously he has no love for the library, but is just using it for his political agenda.

Submitted by winnie c (not verified) on

What a pity.  As Carl Sagan said, "The future can all be tested by how well we support our libraries."  Well, the population of Troy and surrounding communities is well served by the library.  Too bad Troy's government can't support the library.  But then, I suspect they don't give a fig about intellectual growth - only the bottom line.

Submitted by Carol (not verified) on

Martin Howrylak I hold you resonsible to keep the library open.  You told people it could be done without new taxes, told them to vote No on the library proposals.  So, make it happen!   Keep the library open!  Troy without a library is a traversty.  It goes in the face of what we believe makes Troy a good place to live ---.

What is your plan to ensure the library stays open?  Please, let us know.

Submitted by Karen (not verified) on

What they're (Martin, Wade Fleming, etc.)  saying now is that they "think" they can keep the library open, but it will be much reduced,  and it won't be like the library we have now. Also, Martin is talking about a half-mil tax increase.

 What bothers me is that I don't see the numbers. I need to see exactly from the budget what they can cut. Not just "There's waste--we can cut".  I need to see the number, otherwise it's just rhetoric, and empty rhetoric at that.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

Carol,  you are going after the wrong Councilman.  Martin is on our side.

Martin consistently voted to save the library, but Martin was outvoted in City Council by 4 -3.  Martin  can not save the library all by himself.  We need  4  Council votes in order to save the library.  Only 3 councilmen, including Martin, currently want to save the library.  Only 3 councilmen, including Martin, want to discuss and explore ways to save the library, to cut spending somewhere else.

If you really want to save the library, then you need to re-direct your attention, direct your anger, and direct your comments and direct your emails and phone calls, to the  other 4 councilmen who voted to get rid of the library: Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and McGinnis 

Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and McGinnis do not even want to discuss finding a way to keep the library

Submitted by Jennifer (not verified) on

Phlewa, Have you checked Martin's address??  Do you think he's working for us (Troy) when he only visits his parent's house in Troy and calls it home (where does his wife live?) Martin has manipulated people like you.  Don't believe everything he says.  Check on the veracity of his statements.  Why don't you call him and ask him how much he has paid in taxes in Troy this year and where he really lives???

Submitted by Ronald R. Lambert (not verified) on

Phlewa, as I have tried to explain to you before, Martin Howrylak is clearly not on "our" side, he is on his OWN side. He sent out letters just prior to the election urging a NO vote on all four Library Millage Proposals. Only an enemy of the Troy Public Library would have done that. Anything else is just window dressing. What he said for public consumption, how he voted when he knew the majority were voting No, are not the only things to consider. What he actually did behind the scenes to sabotage the library should not be overlooked by anyone. Howrylak is the most dangerous opponent of the library, because he is the most Machiavellian.

Because of him, probably a few hundred people who might have voted yes on Library Millage Proposal 1 were led to vote No. If just 339 No votes had been Yes votes, the Troy Library would have been saved.

Because of him, I will probably have to pay $200 to get a non-resident library card to the Sterling Heights Public Library. And the excellent librarians and other staff members of the Troy Library will be left unemployed--and they had produced a public library that was ranked among the ten best libraries in the country for a city of comparable size. We had an outstanding library, and Howryak threw it all away.

So what will happen to the library building after closing? Is there going to be grass and trees growing from its gutters? Maybe we will see tourists from Japan, Germany and China come and take pictures of it: the symbol of our intellectual decline. It may even become a source of revenue for the city so that our property taxes could be completely eliminated - at last.

Submitted by Liz (not verified) on

How can this be?  No library

No more reserve books waiting like jewels.
No books delivered to shut ins.
No one to help with reference questions and assignments.
No place to go to read magazines and newspapers from all over.

How can this be?

No beautiful picture books for the young.
No books to fill the lives of the lonely.
No computers for those who can't afford them or WIFI.
No place to gather and research with friends. 

How can this be?

No more going home with armloads of books and DVD's. 
No more waiting eagerly for this treasure house to open in the morning. 
No more place for children and home schooled children to go for material to do assignments.
No more getting the latest book from the best seller list.

How can this be?

No more endless number of classics to read and reread.
No more used book shop.
No more books available for business research,
No more place to just come and read in quiet.

How can this be?
Not enough people thought it was worth keeping.
How can this be in Troy?  A library always filled with hundreds of well behaved people.

Submitted by Potential Libra... (not verified) on

I still believe that, in the end, Troy isn't going to let its library be closed. But still, if it IS closed -- what will happen to all the library's books and other materials? Will there be some huge sale or something organized by the Friends?

Submitted by John S. (not verified) on

The only way to save our library is to replace the whole city council and the mayor in the next election. They are simply not willing to keep the library or just using it as a hostage for their other agendas. If they put some effort, the library can be kept open relatively easy. For example, the library can open for reduced hours to save cost, say only open 1 week day and 2 weekends, or even further only on afternoons on those days. I think most troy residents are reasonable enough to accept this type of sacrifice during hard times. When economy gets better, more hours can be added gradually. The problem here is those people in the city hall, fed by our tax money, are just not willing to do anything reasonable. Why do we waste money on those useless people?!

Submitted by Michael (not verified) on

I agree with John.  It seems the leaders of this city have held the library hostage to promote their adgenda.  They never seem to get the concept of a budget and living within it. 

Unfortunately, many residents have to deal with lost jobs, shrinking savings and forclosed homes.  Maybe now the city has to look at what is important and what is not and make those cuts.  For me and others, the library is important.  And during times like these, I could understand if times and services were curtailed.  But to close it?  That does not make sense.

Submitted by Karen (not verified) on

If we reduce the hours below 55 hours per week, we lose state funding and accreditation.  That would be a very serious matter.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

How much state funding do we get? 

IF the library could be run on a bare bones $2 million budget, and if it costs $650,000 a year to keep it closed, that is a net cost of $1.4 million BEFORE we figure in the state funding.   Figuring in state funding, would further reduce how much money we actually  have to come up with in the new 2011 budget in order to save the libary. It is closer and closer  to our needing only about $1 million additional to keep the library from closing.

Troy Council only needs to find $1.4 million MINUS however much we get from state funding.

Seems to me, Troy Council should be able to find only $1 million + - in order to keep the library open.

Submitted by Karen (not verified) on

I'm sorry, but I think you misunderstood my point---we have to reach a certain level of services to GET state funding. So the amount you quoted would be inadequate to reach that point. We need to be open 55 hours a week, and we need to have certain staff, full time, with MLS degrees to do that.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

No need "to replace the whole city council and mayor".   

3 of the council members are on our side and want to keep the library. 

The vote to close the library was 4-3.

"1" single vote is causing the Troy ibrary to close.

We only need "1" more vote to switch to our side to keep the library. 

 

4 council members voted to close the library: Mayor Schilling, Kerwin, McGinnis, and Salter.

We only need to get rid of 1 of these 4 in order to have enough votes to keep the Troy Library.

(Of course, getting rid of all 4 of these would be OK also)

Submitted by John S. (not verified) on

What about Martin Howrylak? If he is really for keeping our library open, why did he send out such a letter at the last minute? He is even more disgusting to me. I just suspect he has more sinister agendas. If we see later our library is privatized or out-sourced, and the out sourcing company is somehow related to Howrylak, I wouldn't be surprised. I just don't trust this council. As I said, they haven't made their best effort to keep our library open. We the residents will speak up on the election day.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

Martin Howrylak has consistently  voted to keep the library and to make budget cuts elsewhere.

 

Submitted by Troyboy (not verified) on

There is plenty of waste in Troy government. Serious issues like missing money in the police department that isn't accounted for and no apparent concern or investigation. A golf course that loses $1 million/year, $9 million on a transit center that isn't needed, millions on Rochester/Big Beaver beautification unneeded, wasted money on lawsuits against Hooters from the Mayor and her cohorts. 

The list goes on and on. 

The one thing that stands out the most is that every single member that voted for closing the library is a former union member. These same people haven't asked for 1 single concession from any of the 6 unions in Troy. These unions still receive benefits and wages that the residents of Troy don't receive in their own jobs. It's time the playing field was leveled and these employees are brought in line with the rest of us and reality.

Too bad this Mayor and her cohorts still believe in living in the past and destroying our futures.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

You make a very interesting and compelling arguement for Troy to keep the library open, and make budget cuts elsewhere.

Councilman Howrylak is fascinating to watch. First he spearheads changing the city charter so taxes cannot be raised without a vote by "the people." Then he opposes the vote in February to raise the millage by 1.9% in February of 2010, which would have saved the library, nature center and museum. Then he stands with the Troy Citizens United and their astonishing pack of lies about city committees who supposedly advised voters to vote no (a big lie). Then he promised to support a millage under 1 mill. Then he opposed the Citizens to Save the Troy Public Library's last-ditch effort to save the library, by writing a letter which did NOT admit the deceptions his friends at TCU had used to scare voters. His friends and cronies are the crazies who take the mic each city council meeting. And they ALWAYS have their facts wrong. Just watch them. They're the ones who said the library board would be a "taxing authority." People bought that nonsense, you know.

Now it's wonderful to see his comments in the press. HE would support a half-mill tax increase, which means suddenly he knows the city doesn't have the money to keep the library open. Yet he offers this pittance (who is he, our daddy) which, because of him, would still have to be voted on by the people--but there is no time for all that to save our library. And besides, he is the one who has whipped up the anti-tax fervor and all the lies about library funding. Does he really believe he can make his crazy followers do an about face and save the library they seem to feel is worthless?

Submitted by Ronald R. Lambert (not verified) on

John S., we can't replace them all in 2011, unless we have a special recall election, which would cost money the city can ill-afford to spend.

Mayor Louise E. Schilling, and Council Members Robin E. Beltramini, Martin Howrylak, and Mary Kerwin will be up for re-election in 2011. The rest, Mayor Pro-Tem Wade Flemming and Council Members Maureen McGinnis and Dane Slater, have their terms ending in 2013.

Submitted by Troyboy (not verified) on

Spending money that could be better spent on a special recall election may actually be a better use of our funds than many that these same people used our taxes for. 

$50k wasted on a city manager search where the information was ignored and Szerlag was rehired. What about the money wasted on the special election this past Feb. for the 1.9 mill these same people felt was necessary and needed? 

This Mayor and other members of council, IE Kerwin, Slater, McGinnis, have wasted too much of this cities money. It's time for change and perhaps a special recall wouldn't be a waste of money. 

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

A recall of  just any "one" of :  Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and/or McGinnis, would be enough to get the 4th vote to save the library.

(The vote to get rid of the library was 4-3, wth Schilling, Kerwin, Slater, and McGinnis voting to defund the Troy Library)

He didn't show up at any of the budget meetings before the big vote.

He has a terrible attendance record and lied to help kill Proposal 1.

Then after telling everyone the library would be fine without it, he admitted he didn't have a plan.

Little chump!

Submitted by U. Charlie (not verified) on

I am a librarian in a neighboring community.   We are already seeing an increase in Troy residents using this library....many thinking that if they register their Troy library card here - they will be able to continue to use this library.  Sorry -- On July 1, 2011, we press the button and delete you from the system. 

What does this really mean?  No material check out, no database use, no interlibrary loan of materials from libraries across the state, no attendance at registered programs, no summer reading programs for children, no Museum Adventure Passes, no free internet.  It does not matter if your children attend schools in our community.  While their classmates check out material for their homework and required reading, your children will not be able to do the same.

These are indeed challenging times.  Everyone is making difficult decisions about where to put our shrinking dollars.  Libraries across the state are slashing budgets, cutting benefits, decreasing salaries, reducing hours and laying off staff. To the Troy resident who yelled at me yesterday "You libraries have to get your act together" - I respond - "OUR act is together. Our immediate obligation is to the taxpayers who fund us -- not residents from neighboring communities who have chosen to not fund their own library. 

Submitted by We can't fund o... (not verified) on

As a neighboring librarian of a community who has never let down their library, I have to agree with U. Charlie.  Our job is to protect the tax dollars of our citizens.  Sharing in  a cooperative is great since we all share in that.  The citizens of Troy had fantastic custodials of their tax dollars at their library and apparently that was not good enough.  I realize this was a ploy of certain persons.  Having worked in Troy some 20 odd years ago, I certainly remember the animosity the city had toward the library.

Having said all that, neighboring communities can not support Troy residents.  We are thankful we can do service to our tax payers and must guard those tax dollars.  The $200 cards exist today but that doesn't mean they always will.  The $200 cards are per person so if a family wanted to use the internet it would be impossible since only 1 person would have access.

Submitted by j strabbing (not verified) on

The mayor and the city council were elected to lead this city.  Instead of ripping the citizens of Troy in these replies, I don't see many people ripping the council and the city budget planners who thought they would scare the city by threatening to close the library and layoff police.  There must be other less important services that can be reduced to find money to keep our city "the city of tomorrow, today".  Stop playing "scare" politics and start planning for the city.  Find money for the library or not get re-elected. To me, its that simple!  For this past election, everyone was using "we only have 1 chance", I think the mayor and council, now only have 1 chance to do what they weere elected to do.  Lead the city, not kill it!!!

Submitted by Rick O. (not verified) on

I totally agree.  While I voted to increase my taxes to fund the library since that failed, as most expected it would given the huge hit we have all taken the last few years, it is now up to those chosen to lead the City to do the hard things and stop playing the blame game/passing the buck.  Cut City salaries/benifits, cut back on staff, spread the pain around and keep vital services incl. Police, DPW, Fire (volunteers), and Library.  Everything else is discretionary, not living in the roaring 90's anymore, learn to do more with less like everyone else in the city, state and country!

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

The  current 2010/2011 Troy  budget/taxes/revenues  is  $141 million dollars,  $58 million for the general fund.

A bare bones full time Troy Library can be kept open for only $1.4 million more than it would cost to close it and maintain the empty library building.

It is not all that difficult  to find $1.4 million out of that $141 million in order  to keep the library open, without a tax increase,  if you cut other things like: the trail system, Transit Center, park development, and make some cuts to employee  pensions and wages. 

http://troymi.gov/budget/2010-2011/023-%20033%20All%20Funds%20Summary.pdf

 

PHELWA, you have no idea what you're talking about. 

The trail and park accounts have been rolled into the general fund and no longer exist anywhere but on Troy Citizens United's 4-page mailer of nonsense.

And for back-up discussing the 2011/12 budget you are using numbers from 2010/11. And you got the numbers wrong anyway.

My understanding is the amount budgeted to care for the library from next July is 140,000 for maintenance. That plus 1.4 million is 1.54 million. This year's bare bones library is $2.4 million.

Good thing you don't care about libraries because you're not going to have one next year.

http://keeptroystrong.blogspot.com/

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

The Troy Library can be run on a $2 million dollar budget. But we dont need to come up with an extra $ 2 million, we only need to come up with  $1.4 million instead of spending it on something else.  If the library closes, Troy Council said it will still cost us  $600,000 a year just to maintain the building, so we only need to cut other things to come up with the difference  between $2 million and $600,000. $2 million to keep the library, or $600,000 to keep it closed. Moreover, closing the libary will only save the city  1.4 million. 

Howrylak and Wade Fleming have been arguing all along in the past that we can find $1.4 million to save the library if the rest of council would only make an effort to try to save the library and take the time to explore other ways to fund the library.  

Submitted by Karen (not verified) on

It's not as simple as that. If you run the library on such a skeleton budget, it will be more costly in the long run. There will be no repair fund for the 40 year old building. Additionally, as time goes on, technological equipment will need to repaired and/or replaced.  Without any reserve funding, this will lead to a huge bill in the future.

Submitted by phlewa@yahoo.com (not verified) on

The Troy residents are going to have to make a choice as to whether they want a library,

or

do we want a new Transit Center, more improved walking trails, better landscaping on Big Bearver, a "green energy" house that had all its plumbing freeze, etc.

We cant have both. We cant afford to continue to spend taxpayer money on everything.  

Submitted by Ted Craig (not verified) on

If you were buying 12-ounce cans of soda for $1 a piece and then then the manufacturer announced the price would stay the same, but the cans would now decrease in size to 11 ounces, would you consider that a price increase? Per can no, but per ounce, obviously. yes. That's what is happening here. Opponents of the millage talked about voting no on four tax increases. But a no vote was still a vote for a tax increase. Nobody's bills will go down when the library closes. I don't like voting to raise my own taxes, but Tuesday I didn't really have a choice, so I opted to pay more for the same services rather than paying the same for fewer services.

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