Maryland public libraries

Another post commenting on Chapter 20 of Give Us a Dollar and We’ll Give You Back Four (2012-13)–now available as a $9.99 Kindle ebook or $21.95 paperback with ISBN 978-1481279161 on Amazon, along with the usual Lulu options.

With only 24 libraries (none omitted), distribution tends to be patchy. None of the libraries are badly funded (none spends less than $17 and only one spends less than $26). Most libraries fall into the upper middle on circulation, with none circulating fewer than two items per capita; 16 (two-thirds) circulate 6 to 16 items per capita (overall, half of the libraries are in that range). No library has 13 or more patron visits per capita, but half have six or more (compared to 42% overall). Relatively few libraries shine for program attendance, with only two (8%) having at least 0.7 attendance per capita (compared to 21% overall). No Maryland library has at least 3.5 PC uses per capita, but 71% have at least one (compared to 57% overall).

Libraries by legal service area

LSA Count %
18,500-24,999 1 4.2%
25,000-34,499 4 16.7%
34,500-53,999 3 12.5%
54,000-104,999 5 20.8%
105,000-4.1 mill. 11 45.8%

Circulation per capita and spending per capita

Circulation per capita correlates strongly (0.63) with spending per capita.

Circulation per capita plotted against spending per capita

Note that the best-funded library spends just under $75 per capita, so this graph isn’t directly comparable to some others.

Circulation per capita (rounded) occurrence by spending category

Another contestant for “silliest graph”—and do note that only circulation points with libraries are included—it’s not at all a linear scale. (Yes, there is a market at every point: note the yellow dot at “2” above 25.)

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