Council to spend over £1m to close the Central Library – no savings to the taxpayer until 2027.

The popular belief is that the Council is closing the Central Library to save money for the Council Tax payer; a necessity driven by funding cuts from Central Government. However, it will be at least 9 years before the Council sees any net saving to its finances. In the meantime, the additional cost will be being funded by the residents of Derby.

The business case for the closure of the Central Library, and the move to the Council House ( re-named as the Riverside Library) details the costs and savings.

A few facts from that business case:

  • The Riverside library will be just under 50% of the size of the Central Library, requiring stock to re-located to other libraries in the City.
  • The building works to accommodate the Library will be £859k ( this was not in the 2017/18 budget; and at only £200k in the 2018/19 budget – so the spend is unapproved)
  • The cost of modifying the other statutory libraries to increase their stock-holding capacity, due to the downsize – £160k
  • The on-going savings in running costs is estimated at £128k pa, however it assumes:
    • There will be zero impact on the running costs of the Council House by having a Library in it
    • The additional costs of the security guards on Saturday would be zero
    • Library staff are made redundant.

Costs to be incurred in 2018/19 by July 2018 ( when the Riverside opens) £1.02m – funded by Council Tax.

First full year savings ( subject to assumptions) 2019/20 £ start paying off the £1.02m (This represents 0.06% of the Council’s budget)

First year of net cost saving 2027 – 9 years away. Most likely – much longer!

Sound business case, for closing the City’s Central Library?

Categories: Libraries

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