Warsaw Library Board members reviewed the library’s proposed 2021 budget of $3,710,000 Monday.

The general fund makes up $3,510,000 of that budget, and the rainy day fund is $200,000.

During the regular meeting, the board approved a declaration of a fiscal body. In the declaration, it states library officials typically submit the library’s annual budget for nonbinding review by a separate fiscal body. Under certain conditions, the library’s budget is subject to binding review.

“The library would be going to the city of Warsaw Common Council if need be based on the numbers that I found from local experts,” Library Director Ann Zydek said.

The board also approved a motion to reduce its 2020 budget. The reduction in the budget will be $618,027.

The operating fund was reduced by $492,958. A sum of $13,008 from the 2019 budget was listed as an encumbrance, but that money was not spent. An encumbrance is a portion of a budget set aside for spending required by law or contract. For the 2020 budget, the operating fund was reduced by $479,950.

From the rainy day fund for the 2020 budget, the library will be reducing the fund by $125,069 “and that  will allow us to have $200,000 available for next year,” Zydek said.

She updated the board on the library’s strategic plan.

Lissa Krull, library strategist from Midwest Collaborative for Library Services, facilitated two half days of planning, Zydek said. At the Aug. 6 Strategic Planning Retreat, “we identified library’s core values, created a shared future vision statement for the library and identified key strategic focus areas.”

The vision that came out of the two days was that the library “engages and equips our community by providing inclusive, innovative and relevant services without barriers.”

The core values of the library include providing a space where patrons can feel supported and accepted; offering a wide variety of collections, programs and services; seeking a convenient way to make services available to patrons in a variety of formats; providing timely and accurate information that informs and empowers patrons.

The key strategic focus areas for the library in 2021-25 include improving user experiences by upgrading and transforming “inside and outside spaces,” creating ways to provide collections programs and services without barriers and adapting and transitioning to provide a full-service virtual library experience.

Goals of the strategetic plan including reinventing library spaces, streamlining patron access, expanding the library’s virtual presence and cultivating community engagement.

Zydek said due to COVID, the library has already had to address some of those areas.

Bruce Hively, facility supervisor, asked for five bids to outsource the library’s cleaning services. He received three bids and the bid from The Cleaning Company, Fort Wayne, of $44,340 per year was chosen. No increase for two 24 months will occur. Zydek said The Cleaning Company started cleaning at the library Aug. 31.