PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Raising taxes is not usually a popular idea, but the Carnegie Library is banking on Pittsburgh residents to approve a measure that would do just that.
Even on a sweltering summer day, dozens of people braved the heat to praise their library. However, libraries cost money, and with cuts in state and local aid, officials with the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh say that’s in short supply.
“We’re asking people in the city of Pittsburgh if they’d consider a 0.25 property tax millage increase to support the library and only to support the library,” said one Carnegie Library official.
The library says that 0.25 mill hike would equate to about $25 a year on a $100,000 home. Around Oakland, support was strong.
“I’m in favor; and we spend a lot of time there, so I think it’s a small price to pay for people to have access to a library,” said one resident.
“You know, a lot of people are going to say we pay enough in taxes already,” said one library official. “We recognize people are going to have differing opinions, but we also know people want their library; it’s important to them, and this is their opportunity to vote.”
It takes about 2,800 signatures, give or take a few, to get the referendum on the ballot. In the meantime, supporters are hoping to log about 9,000 just to be safe.