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Columns

Sugar Grove Library Lights

A year in review

SUGAR GROVE – The Annual Report from the Sugar Grove Public Library for fiscal year July 1, 2018- June 30, 2019 is now available and presents a wide range of information.   

After our fiscal year closes there is a process to professionally audit finances and report statistical information to the State Library.  Data is then translated into a document made available to our district residents and users. You may pick up a print copy at the library or download from the web page and fun slideshow capturing pictures of events and successes is available on our Facebook page under “videos.” We welcome speaking invitations to your organization to discuss what the library accomplished in a year, and listen to feedback and suggestions.

Circulation, the pulse of materials through our community, clocked in at 153,518 for print materials and increased by 7.6% from the prior year. 64,447 items flowed through the Inter-Library Loan service, a resource sharing service that allows patron access to almost 8 million items. E-book circulation was up over 10% as patrons readily utilize book downloads on phones and various devices. The usage of the facility increased 5.74% at 74,670 visits and 456 programs were attended by patrons.  Comprehensively, circulation is up approximately 40% since the implementation of the strategic plan in 2016. Staff efforts with reader’s advisory, displays, marketing of the collection and joining SWAN for resource sharing may be attributed to the rise.

While the library remains underfunded which limits open hours, staff programming and materials growth, stewardship is a top priority and the annual audit was exceedingly clean. The financials and audit are available on the website as transparency is a priority for the district.   Expenditures were carefully monitored to bring the library in with $1,369,263 expenditures and $1,379,402 for revenue. Of that, over half of the expenditures at 53% go for building bonds. The library refinanced bonds in 2014, saving taxpayers over 1 million dollars. Bonds will be paid off in 2024, and the library hopes to retain the funding support in order to close the gap on critical needs. Taking care of existing taxpayer investments in the facility is a priority, while keeping the library “in the now” with updates is ongoing.

Our grounds projects this year retrofitted half of our light fixtures as all light bulbs are transitioning to LED, and luckily we were able to continue to use our existing fixtures by changing out the wiring. Our building was completely power washed to remove grime and prevent mold, and we increased our downspout length in several places to keep water away from the building. Our boilers and roof required repairs, simply due to use and aging. We opened up back drive through service that utilizes a doorbell, allowing patrons with limited mobility, illness or small children to pick up their holds without leaving their vehicle.

Progress was made in the official formation of the Library Foundation, a 501(c)3, which will enable the opportunity to partner for grants, memorial giving, and special projects. Our library was featured in an ALA publication, Book Club Reboot, discussing our Tails and Trails book club. Our Library of Wonderful Things was launched with technology like a Roku, Go-Pro, or even a crock pot or karaoke machine. Gallery 125 held several exhibitions, including ones from Waubonsee Lifelong Learning Institute. The Groovin’ in the Grove outdoor summer concert series continued to grow, with patrons enjoying music of all genres during the summer months.

We very much welcome community input, and graciously invite guests to our board meetings held on the fourth Wednesday of every month. This year was a wonderful one for the library, and we appreciate your support and patronage. You may obtain more information about the Library on our webpage at www.sgpl.org or call 630-466-4686. The library is located at 125 S. Municipal Drive.

Shannon Halikias is the Director of the Sugar Grove Library, a Professor at College of DuPage and Joliet Junior College, writes obsessively and is an active outdoors lover with two rowdy boys. You can reach her at shannon@sgpl.org.

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