Michael K. Pate wrote an extremely good blog entry at LibraryPlanet on the effects of Florida’s new Property Tax law. To give a brief overview, the state legislature decided that property taxes needed to be similar across all counties (standard millage plus a percentage factor for growth). Many “non-essential” county services now face cutbacks because of this move, often affecting libraries in terms of staff, acquisitions, and operating hours.
Eventually the money issues trickle down into the state university system, and the private colleges get scared as well. Yep. What a time to be looking for a library job in Florida. I know that Lake County has asked all of their services to be frugal with their money as to not lose positions. It also is made a bit worse by some new county commissioners who possess semi-extremist views of what a library should do regardless of the first amendment. They don’t open the pocketbook as much as previous commissioners as well. On the other hand, the new building is within 6 months of completion. There’s no exact opening date yet, but I’m guessing early 2008. Ahhh, just in time for peak snowbird traffic! I think it’s time to start looking into the corporate/law/medical sector for some work.