Wondering why the library deserves funding? Take a look at some of our usage statistics from 2018. Our complete Annual Report is available HERE.

Why does Jamestown need a library?

  • The library welcomed over 150,000 visitors.
  • More than 215,000 items were borrowed in 2018.
  • Our public computers were used over 40,000 times.
  • Over 15,000 people used our meeting rooms, which are free for all nonprofit use.
  • Library staff answered more than 30,000 reference questions.
  • In addition to books, DVDs, audiobooks, and magazines, the library also provides access to free eBooks and online audiobooks.
  • The library offers access to online resources including Gale research databases, Ancestry (genealogy research), Rosetta Stone, and the New York Times.
  • We offer science and technology programming in the Makerspace every weekday from 3:30-5:00, and storytimes two days a week. Free after-school snacks are available to all children year round.
  • Since the Makerspace opened in 2017, we have welcomed over 7,000 visitors to the space.

The library is seeking a return to its funding levels prior to funding cuts made by the city in 2017 and 2018.

  • Taxes assessed by the city for the library provided about 1/3 of the library’s budget before 2017. In 2016 the library received $350,000 from the city.
  • In 2017, the city reduced the amount they gave the library, but did not reduce the taxes assessed to city residents. The city cut funding that year from $350,000 to $100,000.
  • In 2018 the city cut the remaining $100,000 in half to $50,000. In 2019 the city left funding at $50,000.
  • These cuts will result in state aid ($111,000 annually) also being cut.
  • Prendergast Library ranks in the lowest 2% of libraries in the entire nation in support from their local community.

The library is seeking a tax rate of 23 cents per $1,000 of assessed home value. For a home assessed at $50,000, the tax would be $11.50 a year. For a home assessed at $100,000, the tax would be $23.00 a year.