Libraries prove their worth

Okanagan Regional Library has released the findings of a value for money study conducted by the auditing firm of Grant Thornton.

Okanagan residents appear to be getting good bang for their buck when it comes to libraries.

Okanagan Regional Library has released the findings of a value for money study conducted by the auditing firm of Grant Thornton.

“Most municipalities are getting what they are putting into the system — some a little more, some a little less,” said director Catherine Lord.

However, there are some discrepancies, according to the study which is based on 2011 figures.

“Salmon Arm is getting more value for less dollars contributed but Osoyoos is getting less service for more money,” said director Mike Macnabb.

Most North Okanagan communities are receiving services similar to the taxes they provide to ORL.

“Vernon was bang on in 2011 but we have a new library and that could change whether we are paying more or less,” said Macnabb.

The ORL board has asked staff to generate a sample of the version annually to guide decision making.

“The board will establish high-level parameters for the management team to generally align area service expenditures with revenue, allowing for some flexibility and emergent situations and adjust its policies and guidelines as required,” states an ORL release.

Also, the board has approved the 2014 budget, which includes a 1.62 per cent increase.

“We boosted up the budget a little more,” said Macnabb of increases to staff pensions and increased programs.

The 1.62 per cent increase amounts to about 75 cents per capita.