Ellsworth Public Library

In fall 2019, library trustees approved a new policy to request funding per capita from the 18 surrounding towns that we serve, and to implement a cardholder fee for residents of any towns that do not provide funding in full to the library. This policy was set to take effect July 1, 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic most town meetings were postponed or cancelled, so library trustees have delayed implementation until October 1, 2020. At that time all residents of a town that does not provide funding will pay $25 for a library card. The fee will go up to $30 in 2021.

On June 11th 2020, city councilors unanimously decided to cut $100,000 from the library’s fiscal year 2021 budget. This represents a 15% cut, on top of a 5% cut library trustees had already made to the budget from fiscal year 2019. If it goes through, this would be a very severe cut to the library that will require us to cut both hours and services.

As the county seat and the largest city in Hancock County, Ellsworth is a busy service center and our library serves many of the surrounding smaller communities, for a combined service population of over 20,000. The library is a bustling hub that draws people from throughout the region into downtown. Last year we welcomed over 83,000 people into our building. Most of the surrounding towns we serve provide funding to the library, but at a much lower rate than the city of Ellsworth does.

More information about the new policy:

Presentation: Library Funding Forum November 2019
Library trustees and administration presented the new funding plan for support from surrounding towns at a public forum in November 2019.

Town Funding Request Letters FY21
Our FY21 funding request letters to supporting towns were co-signed by the city council chairman and city manager in fall 2019. City council signed off on our new funding plan.

Ellworth Public Library Strategic Plan
Funding diversity is a strategic goal. In line with this goal, library trustees have reduced the City of Ellsworth requested appropriation for FY20 and FY21 by about 5% each year.

The Ellsworth Public Library is a municipal library and a department of the city of Ellsworth. The library is governed by a five member board of trustees, elected by Ellsworth residents.

Ellsworth Library Funding Breakdown for FY20:

Employee Salaries $389,926.00
Employee Benefits $168,457.00
Contractual Services $62,400.00
Supplies and Materials $69,250.00
Equipment $7,000.00
Total: $697,033.00