Arkansas public libraries

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


Relatively few libraries and systems (45 in the tables, 12 omitted) with two-thirds in the bottom three funding brackets (and none in the top). Just over one-quarter of the libraries circulate at least six items per capita (compared to 64% overall) and only 18% have at least five visits per year (54% overall). Similarly, just over one-quarter (27%) of the libraries have at least 0.3 program attendance per capita (compared to 54% overall). With so few libraries, it’s not too surprising that the budget table for circulation is somewhat chaotic—although, at least for the lowest six brackets, visits per capita and PC use per capita follow an orderly progression with spending.

Libraries by legal service area

LSA Count % Outliers
1,150-1,649 0.00% 2
1,650-2,249 1 2.2% 1
2,250-2,999 1 2.2% 1
5,300-6,799 1 2.2%
6,800-8,699 2 4.4% 2
11,100-14,099 0.00% 1
14,100-18,499 4 8.9%
18,500-24,999 4 8.9% 2
25,000-34,499 6 13.3% 1
34,500-53,999 5 11.1% 1
54,000-104,999 15 33.3% 1
105,000-4.1 mill. 6 13.3%


Circulation per capita correlates very strongly with spending per capita, with a Pearson’s coefficient of 0.82.

Circulation per capita plotted against spending per capita

Circulation per capita (rounded) occurrence by spending category

One Response to “Arkansas public libraries”

  1. Alicia says:

    Thanks for providing this information. It’s interesting for those of us who’ve worked in several of the NYC systems to see information from the rest of the country. The conclusion: “…the times, they are a changin’ (Bob Dylan) in librarianship, all over (sadly). Google does not compensate for human beings or providing higher levels of service