The library service took cuts this year. It currently costs £5.6m. Libraries have always generated income. This is currently £800,000 a year and we will keep this going.
That means that the total cost on Council tax is £4.8m and we want to reduce this by £1.2m to £3.6m by April 2015.
Reduce premises costs by £250,000
If we share premises, locate with other services and make the most of "closed" times to timeshare with other services we can all save money.
Increase volunteer support from 400 to 1600
This really helps to focus our paid staff time on customers who most need our help.
Provide services to other authorities that save them money and generate income for us - £590,000 a year by 2015
We are the cheapest library service in the UK and one of the best. Our involvement in services by customers is well ahead. This is already happening – Essex Libraries run Slough libraries in a partnership agreement with them.
Make further staffing reductions - £300,000 over two years
We are committed to having paid staff in each of the 36 libraries. However we are realistic that further savings are likely to be required.
Keep going with £800,000 income each year
We know we will need to work hard at this as computer hire, late return charges and the hire of DVDs as well as shop sales make up most of this at present. We do expect Friends membership to grow from 700 this year rising to 3,500 by March 2015.
Regular support from Foundation Trust, Friends groups and districts and Boroughs £60,000 a year
It is easy to raise one off money but more difficult to keep raising money every year. That is why this target does not include one off sponsorship of new libraries or the bequests and legacies we might attract from time to time. We do think a modest payment for using our library premises by other public services is realistic and affordable.
Our Friends groups have told us what they can do in addition to the welcome practical support and local publicity they bring to each library. We are grateful for this and hope from this start, more and more groups might feel able to make a regular financial contribution.
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