Congratulations residents of the Ela Area Public Library District – the “mortgage” on the library building has been paid off. After 20 years, the Library issued the final bond payment of $1,045,000 the end of December.
On April 13, 1999 library district voters approved the issuance of a bond in the amount of $13.9 million to help pay for the construction of the current library building. The bond was, in effect, a mortgage on the building.
Over the years, in an effort to take advantage of lower interest rates, the construction bonds were refinanced three times by the Board of Trustees - in 2005, 2009 and 2012. “The total savings achieved by the Board’s refinancing efforts saved taxpayers more than $1.3 million,” said Ela Area Public Library Executive Director Matt Womack.
Consequently, beginning with the current year’s tax bills, the Library’s tax rate will drop 12.73%. Residents will pay less in property taxes to the Library this tax year than last. The new rate is expected to be approximately $77 less per year for a $400,000 house.
The community has embraced many benefits from the newer building. Spacious rooms for group learning and activities, a larger children’s area, a dedicated quiet space for reading and working, two digital media labs and Forge, an innovative makerspace, are new developments that play an active and important role in the Library.
"In 1999, residents voted to invest in their library space and that investment has yielded many benefits for the community,” says Board President Cindy Blank. “With the mission 'to share the joy of discovery,' the library has become a hub of activity. The Board of Trustees is committed to being fiscally responsible and are so happy to celebrate the accomplishment of 'paying of the mortgage' with the community."