A millage is a tax rate levied on real estate or other property. The millage rate is the number of dollars of tax assessed for each $1,000 of property value. ELPL’s has two operating millages (one voted on by East Lansing residents, and one approved by City Council), and each millage is one mill apiece. A mill is a unit to describe the millage rate; it is equal to a thousandth of a dollar, or one tenth of one cent.
The millage renewal is on the November 8, 2022 ballot. Absentee ballots start to arrive in mailboxes XXX.
This millage, along with the millage approved by City Council, make up the majority of ELPL’s budget. Since the current millage started in 2013, ELPL has:
- Created and launched a new website
- Hosted One Book, One Community author visits
- Created a Maker Studio, providing affordable public access to 3D printers, sound recording equipment, sewing machines, a laser cutter, a Glowforge, and a vinyl cutter
- Installed early childhood literacy computer stations
- Developed a Teen Afterschool Program
- Enhanced and added digital platforms such as CloudLibrary, Hoopla, Kanopy
- Installed a Little Free Library at the East Lansing Family Aquatic Center
- Repaved the public parking lot and added senior parking spots
- Installed new cement and stairs along half of the front of the library, and redid the southside ramp with railings
- Installed 24/7 hold pick-up lockers with the help of the Friends of the Library and a generous patron
- Upgraded and installed a completely new HVAC system
- Purchased the Library on the Go van, which has allowed the library to be out in the community at parks, festivals, schools, retirement communities, apartment complexes, and downtown East Lansing
- Purchased and circulated mobile hotspots and Chromebooks
- Created a tool library that circulates
- Created a seed library
- Established the library as a cooling and heating center during extreme weather
- Hosted a variety of programs to meet the diverse needs and interests of East Lansing, including the Social Justice Reading Group, Black History Mobile 101 Museum, Deeper than the Skin concert, bilingual StoryTimes, free homework help, job help, resume writing help, coding for kids, cooking with kids, STEAM programs, free tax preparation with the AARP, etc.
- And more!
In September, ELPL will be installing a new interactive mural that reflects on the civil rights history of East Lansing. Coming soon, ELPL will also install a permanent Story Walk for families to enjoy in downtown East Lansing, as well as more Little Free Libraries. The library is also in the process of creating a library app to bring library services to more users.
The millage will be used to ensure that the library can continue to provide the programs, services, and resources that East Lansing has come to expect, as well as expand to meet future community needs. If the millage does not pass, the library will have to reduce programs, services, and staff.
ELPL’s millage is one mill. Because of the 1978 Headlee Tax Amendment, a local unit’s millage rate is “rolled back” so that it never exceeds the rate of inflation. Due to the Headlee rollback, ELPL’s actual renewal rate is 0.997 mill.
A mill is a thousandth of a dollar, or one tenth of one cent. So for example, if someone has a $100,000 home with a taxable value of $50,000 their tax rate for one mill at .997 is $49.85 per year. Including the millage approved by City Council, that puts the total rate for two mills at $99.7 per year. For two mills, this breaks down to a cost of $8.308 per month.
In 1978, Michigan voters approved the "Headlee" tax limitation amendments to the Michigan Constitution. It established an overall limitation on total state spending each fiscal year and limited the tax revenues. Taxpayers whose assessments grew faster than the inflation rate had their property tax increases limited. Headlee requires a local unit of government to reduce its millage when annual growth on existing property is greater than the rate of inflation.
As a consequence, the local unit’s millage rate is “rolled back” so that the resulting growth in property tax revenue, community-wide, is no more than the rate of inflation
To support the East Lansing Public Library, shall the City of East Lansing be authorized pursuant to MCL 397.201 to impose a renewal of a millage of up to .997 mills (99.7 cents per $1,000 of taxable value), for a period of ten (10) years (2023-2032) inclusive, to be deposited in a separate fund for the exclusive use of the East Lansing Public Library under the direction of the East Lansing Library Board? Such millage, if fully levied, would raise an estimated $1,309,690 in the first year.
[All amounts levied under this millage on property located outside the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority will be disbursed directly to the East Lansing Public Library. Michigan law requires that certain amounts levied under this millage on property located within the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority be disbursed to that authority. Disbursement to that authority is estimated to account for less than 5.45% of total millage revenue.]