Archive for Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Basehor library patrons invited to public forum on bond issue

March 10, 2004

Voters living within the Basehor Community Library District, which covers about 50 square miles, will have the option to vote during an April 6 library bond issue.

"We want to stress anyone living within our boundary lines are paying taxes to our library district and they are the people we're serving," library director Carla Kaiser said. "(The bond issue) is about trying to provide better services than we can now."

Voters living in the district will be asked to vote on a $3.79 million bond issue, which would fund a new building on 158th Street, southwest of the current library in downtown Basehor.

A public forum has been scheduled to discuss the library bond issue. It is set for 2 p.m. March 21 at the United Methodist Church on 158th Street.

Library officials and architects will be available to answer questions.

According to estimates, an approved bond issue would increase the library district's mill levy by 7.79 mills. The current library mill levy is 3.23 mills.

For the owner of a home with an assessed valuation of $100,000, an approved bond issue would increase their taxes $89.58 per year or $7.46 per month. For a home valued at $125,000, the bond issue would increase taxes $97.37 per year or $8.11 per month. The new library will be paid off over a 10-year period.

Kaiser said the mill levy necessary to fund construction of the new library is an estimate only and assumes no increases in assessed valuations, which could lower the figure.

Recent valuation trends in the library district would indicate an increase in assessed valuation is likely to occur, she said.

The 2003 total assessed valuation of the library district is $62,140,955. Since 1999, the valuation of the library district has increased 57 percent, an average of 11.95 percent annually.

"We're trying to present the most you'd pay with an approved bond issue," Kaiser said. "But, it's reasonable to expect this would be lower because of assessed valuation."

The library board of trustees has developed a preliminary timeline they would like to follow if the bond issue is approved in April.

Notice would be given to companies interested in bidding on the general obligation bonds shortly after the bond issue is approved. Library officials would award the low bid in June. Letting and awarding construction bids would take place in the fall.

If the bond issue is approved, the new library would encompass 21,000 square feet of space.

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