Pandemic puts hit on patronage at library

Circulation, attendance in Saukville down significantly because of impact of virus
Ozaukee Press Staff

As would be expected in the year of the pandemic, circulation of materials and attendance at programs plummeted at the Oscar Grady Public Library in 2020, according to the annual report presented to the Village of Saukville Library Board on Tuesday night.

Total circulation was 46,308, just more than half that of a normal year, with circulation of children’s materials totaling 20,361, also a little more than half in pre-pandemic years.

Program attendance also was down, with  3,696 children attending, about two-thirds of a normal year. Attendance at all programs totaled 4,747. There were no young adult programs.

Website visits were up, totaling 60,512.

As usual, the library was a resource to people living outside the village, loaning 13,181 items through the Monarch Library System’s online service.

The Monarch Library System is a consortium of 33 libraries in Ozaukee, Dodge, Sheboygan and Washington counties.

In all, 12,839 people from communities with their own library and 10,320 people from communities without a library patronized the library.

Another 2,011 people came from outside the county, including 825 from Washington County.

The library was closed for 10 weeks of the year — from March 16 to June 1 — and operated with reduced hours for most of the rest of the year, the report says.

When it was open, occupancy was restricted to 25% of capacity for much of the year and the children’s department and its programs were shut down. Patrons were encouraged to use curbside pickup service.

Besides curbside pickup of materials, the services offered included remote programming.

The library also added 2,875 print books, 218 audio materials and 658 video materials.

Operating income for the year totaled $374,070, with $287,131 provided by the village and the rest from non-village residents.

Operating expenses totaled $372,619, with the largest budget expense being $249,831 for employee salaries and benefits and $64,094 for materials.



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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