Commonwealth Journal

Local News

November 15, 2012

Auditor: Library taxing districts are models for others


Somerset —

Elaine Wilson, a four-and-a-half-year member of the Pulaski County Library Board, attested to her participation in these “best practices,” as well as that of her fellow board members.
“We’re required to go through training,” she said. “One of the people who generally sits in on board meetings is the regional librarian. She’s provided training in the last year. We also have other training opportunities. ... We participate in a lot of things to keep knowledgeable about what we need to do. We make sure we’re doing everything by the book.”
Wilson added that she and Library Director Charlotte Keeney actually visited with Edelen in a meeting in Russell County recently in discussing special taxing districts and the requirements made of them.
“Filing (information with the Department of Libraries and Archives) is routine,” she said. “We couldn’t do without the expertise and legal opinion that we get from up there (and the Library Association). You have a lot of people up there who deal with a lot of different libraries. Having their expertise helps us.”
According to Edelen’s special district survey — the information is available on the website — budgeted revenues for Pulaski’s library system in the last fiscal year total $2,111,276, while actual revenues are listed at $2,234,790. They did run $10,926 over budget in receipts. However, actual expenditures totaled only $2,281,430, while budgeted appropriations were $2,542,581. The Pulaski Library system had $4,000 in non-tax revenue, and a total carry-over from one fiscal year to the next of $306,572. 
Edelen said it's a "scandal" that Kentucky has never before been able to provide an accurate count of the districts and whether they are compliant with state laws. But he added that the "vast majority are honest stewards of the tax dollars they spend."

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