Archive for December 12th, 2012

California public libraries

Posted in $4 on December 12th, 2012

The fifth of 49 notes on Chapter 20 of Give Us a Dollar and We’ll Give You Back Four (2012-13), this time on the public libraries of California.

California has relatively few libraries for its population—176 libraries and systems in the tables (with five omitted, including one very large system). Unusual expenditure levels are at the top (17.6% spending $73 to $399.99, compared to 9.8% overall) and lower middle (15.3% in the $21 to $25.99 bracket, compared to 10.9% overall). Adjusted for California’s high cost of living, the median adjusted benefit ratio is always at least 4.00. Circulation is on the low side, with half the libraries circulating fewer than 6 items per capita (36% overall). Patron visits are also slightly on the low side, with 46% of libraries having at least 5 visits (54% overall). Program attendance is considerably worse: 48% have less than 0.2 attendance per capita, compared to 30% overall. Similarly, 55% have less than one PC use per capita, compared to 43% overall.

On the budget side, circulation per capita correlates well with spending (except for a small step down at $26 to $30.99) and visits per capita correlate fairly well (except for a small step down at $17 to $20.99).

Libraries by legal service area

LSA Count % Outliers
<700 0.00% 1
1,150-1,649 1 0.6%
1,650-2,249 2 1.1%
4,000-5,299 1 0.6%
5,300-6,799 1 0.6%
6,800-8,699 1 0.6%
8,700-11,099 2 1.1%
11,100-14,099 7 4.0% 2
14,100-18,499 8 4.6%
18,500-24,999 5 2.8%
25,000-34,499 12 6.8%
34,500-53,999 18 10.2% 1
54,000-104,999 45 25.6%
105,000-4.1 mill. 73 41.5% 1

Tables

I used California as an example of the tables that could have been included in Graphing Public Library Benefits—but would have added 250 pages or so to an already-long ebook. Since that content is already handy, here it is: More than I’m providing for other states. This section covers 176 libraries and is copied unmodified from Chapter 20 of GPLB.

Figure 20.1 Spending per capita (rounded) occurrence

Circulation Per Capita

Circulation per capita correlates very strongly (0.75) with spending per capita. Figure 20.2 omits one library that circulates 54.33 items per capita and spends $195 per capita.

Figure 20.2 Circulation per capita plotted against spending per capita

Figure 20.3 Circulation per capita (rounded) occurrence by spending category, part 1

Figure 20.4 Circulation per capita (rounded) occurrence by spending category, part 2

Patron Visits Per Capita

Patron visits per capita correlate extremely strongly (0.87) with spending per capita.

Figure 20.5 Patron visits per capita plotted against spending per capita

Figure 20.6 Patron visits per capita (rounded, horizontal) occurrence by spending category, part 1

Figure 20.7 Patron visits per capita (rounded, horizontal) occurrence by spending category, part 2

Program Attendance Per Capita

Program attendance per capita correlates moderately (0.41) with spending per capita. Figure 20.8 omits one library with 6.32 program attendance per capita and $51 spending per capita.

Figure 20.8 Program attendance per capita plotted against spending per capita

Figure 20.9 Program attendance (to nearest 10th) occurrence by spending category, part 1

Figure 20.10 Program attendance (to nearest 10th) occurrence by spending category, part 2

Personal Computer Use Per Capita

Personal computer use per capita correlates strongly (0.65) with spending per capita.

Figure 20.11 Personal computer use per capita plotted against spending per capita

Figure 20.12 PC use per capita (rounded to 10ths) occurrence by spending category, part 1

Figure 20.13 PC use per capita (rounded to 10ths) occurrence by spending category, part 2

 


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