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Previous Answers

Where's the $59 million loan coming from? What's the interest rate?

As a millage agency in Richland County, general obligation bonds approved by the voters are the source for significant capital funds, making monies available now but repaid over time (typically 20 years) through property taxes. Estimates indicate that the owner of a $100,000 home would pay $12-14 a year more during that time. Because interest rates for the bond market are historically low, that cost is half of what it was when the last bond referendum passed in 1989.

How long will the bond last?

Richland County is the entity that will issue the debt, and their staff will make the determination on how to structure the bonds. Estimates for property tax increases were based on a bond length of 20 years.

Has the previous bond from 1989 been satisfied?

Yes. Any obligations from the previous bonds issued in 1989 have been satisfied.

With bigger buildings and new facilities will the library's operating costs increase?

The library's Capital Needs Plan - which adds 63,900 square feet systemwide - will only increase the library's operating costs by 1% each year. By adhering to LEED certified building practices, ongoing maintenance costs will actually be reduced.

Are there any book purchases earmarked for the bond funds?

No. bond funds cannot be used for purchasing books. However, the bond allows us to maximize the use of the library's annual operating budget which is where book purchases come from. Since bond funds will be available to make improvements to the library, we won't have to use our operating funds in that way every year, which frees up more money for us to spend on books and other operational needs.

How are you going to fill the libraries you build if none of the money is going to books?

We are putting people first in the design of our spaces. While we have ideas of the spaces needed in our libraries, we want each location to represent the community it serves. Customer feedback on those specifics -and all we do- is always important to us.

How long are the Cooper renovations expected to take?

Richland Library Cooper’s renovation will take approximately one year—beginning in February 2016 and concluding sometime in the spring of 2017. Because, the renovation will involve a complete reconfiguration of the entrance and interior as well as the addition of square footage on the front of the building closest to Trenholm Rd, the library will be closed for the duration of renovations. The parking lot will also be reconfigured to include a user-friendly, drive-through bookdrop.