How should county board fund Winneshiek County's libraries?

Posted: Wed, Jan 13, 2010 8:00 AM

The Winneshiek County Board each year gives money to the libraries in Decorah, Calmar, Ossian, Spillville and Fort Atkinson. Last year that subsidy amounted to $103,000. The money has been split between the five libraries according to the property values in those communities. But property values are increasing in Decorah while declining in the other four communities.

The Winneshiek Library Association is asking the county board to ignore the changes in property values this year when calculating its subsidy. That would mean the five libraries would split up the county funding the same way it was split up this year. The libraries do not want a fight among themselves for the funding.

But supervisors might not go along with the request. County Board Chairman Dean Darling says supervisors will discuss the funding formula and could decide to split up their subsidy to county libraries based on the updated property values--despite the library association's request.